On July 19th, Spokesman of the Iranian Armed Forces Brigadier General Abolfazl Shekarchi said that Iran had lost no drone, despite claims by the US that the USS Boxer had downed one in the Persian Gulf.
“Contrary to the unfounded allegation and illusion of the terrorist president of the United States, all drones belonging to the Islamic Republic of Iran in the Persian Gulf region and the Strait of Hormuz, including the drone mentioned by Trump, after the planned reconnaissance and controlled mission have returned to their bases intact, and no reports have been reported on the USS Boxer’s confrontation with Iranian drones.”
The spokesman called these claims “unfounded allegations” that are aimed at creating “inflammation and insecurity” in the Persian Gulf.
He further said that the armed forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran have always considered the legitimate mission to safeguard and control the security of the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz their legal duty, with full vigilance in line with international standards.
On the evening of July 18th, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, while in New York to meet with UN Secretary-General António Guterres told reporters that he had no information regarding a downed drone and that a statement from the military must be given.
Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Seyyed Abbas Araghchi responded to Trump’s claim that an Iranian drone was downed, saying that no such thing happened.
He expressed concern that the US may have accidentally downed its own drone by accident.
We have not lost any drone in the Strait of Hormuz nor anywhere else. I am worried that USS Boxer has shot down their own UAS by mistake!
— Seyed Abbas Araghchi (@araghchi) July 19, 2019
Hours later, Foreign Minister Javad Zarif tweeted a “Reminder” showing where the borders of the US and Iran are.
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) July 18, 2019
Days earlier, after arriving in New York, Javad Zarif accused the US of being inherently dishonest when it comes to Iran.
For 8 YEARS, Saddam showered our cities with missiles & bombs provided by East & West.
Meanwhile, NO ONE sold Iran any means of defense.
We had no choice but building our own. Now they complain.
Instead of skirting the issue, US must end arms sales to Saddam's reincarnations. pic.twitter.com/rGGDk57WaB
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) July 17, 2019
According to him, Iran has only developed a potent military arsenal because the U.S. has armed all of its local rivals.
Iran’s top diplomat said that the US had long supported Saddam as he fought against Iran. The U.S. gave Saddam economic and diplomatic aid while arranging military supplies from third-party nations, among other kinds of support. This public support stretched across two administrations—President Ronald Reagan’s second term and that of his successor President George H. W. Bush.
“Meanwhile, NO ONE sold Iran any means of defense,” Zarif added. The truthfulness of the statement is quite questionable.
Regardless, Zarif claimed that Iran’s isolation in the war meant the nation “had no choice” but to build up its indigenous arms industry. “Now they complain,” he added, referring to the US.
“Instead of skirting the issue, US must end arms sales to Saddam’s reincarnations,” he concluded
On July 18th, Javad Zarif met with UN Secretary-General António Guterres. In their meeting the two discussed the restrictions imposed by the US on the staff of Iran’s diplomatic mission to the UN, tensions in the Middle East, as well as the reductions in Iran’s commitments to the JCPOA (the Iran Nuclear Deal).
There is little additional information provided on the meeting.
MORE ON THE TOPIC:
- US Claims Its USS Boxer Downed Iranian Drone Over Strait Of Hormuz
- Iranian Army Receives Three New Combat Drones (Photos)
- Iran’s IRGC Detained Foreign Vessel ‘Smuggling Fuel’ In Persian Gulf (Videos)