US warns Iran over blocking oil strait

2012-01-13 10:11
Washington - The United States has used a secret channel to warn Iran's leaders against closing the strategic Strait of Hormuz, saying that doing so would provoke a US response, the New York Times reported.

Iran has threatened to close the narrow and strategic waterway - a chokepoint for one fifth of the world's traded oil - in the event of a military strike or the severe tightening of international sanctions.

The New York Times, citing unnamed US officials, said late on Thursday that the White House has communicated to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that closing the strait would be a "red line" and provoke a response.

The officials did not provide further details about the covert communication channel, except to say that it was separate from the Swiss government, through which the United States occasionally relays messages to Iran's leaders.

The United States and its allies have stepped up increasingly harsh sanctions on Iran over its nuclear enrichment program, which they have charged is part of a secret drive to develop nuclear weapons.

Iran has insisted its nuclear program is entirely peaceful and vowed to retaliate against any strike on its facilities.

Tensions have flared in recent days following the killing of an Iranian nuclear scientist in a bombing Tehran has blamed on US and Israeli intelligence services. US officials have denied any involvement in the attack.

Iran's Revolutionary Guards have announced new naval maneuvers in the Strait of Hormuz within the next few weeks, underlining Tehran's threat to close the narrow channel between the Persian Gulf and the Arabian Sea.

Washington has meanwhile sent a second aircraft carrier to waters just outside the Gulf, and a third is on its way.

Read more on:    us  |  iran
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
45 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

 
/News

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Valentine’s Day gifts – 14 Feb!

Gifts to spoil him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

Games on Sale!

Save up to 60% on selected games. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off All Textbooks

Save up to 30% off an extensive range of prescribed textbooks for all major universities and FET colleges. Shop Now!

Save up to 40% on outdoor accessories!

Tents, sleeping, day packs and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

30% off fragrances

Get 30% off fragrances for him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Love is in the air and it is swirling around you in a romantic mist. This may be an idealistic yearning for that perfect love or...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.