Region | Iran

Khamenei warns of energy disruption

Iran's top leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, warned on Sunday that oil shipments from the Gulf would be disrupted should Iran come under US attack.

  • Agencies
  • Published: 00:00 June 4, 2006
  • Gulf News

Tehran: Iran's top leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, warned on Sunday that oil shipments from the Gulf would be disrupted should Iran come under US attack.

"If you make any mistake [of invading Iran], definitely shipment of energy from this region will be seriously jeopardized," Khamenei said on state-run radio.

He insisted that Tehran will not give up its right to produce nuclear fuel, and warned that in the event of a disruption, the US and its allies will not be able to secure oil shipments that transit close to Iran's coast.

Khamenei, however, did not specify how oil supplies would be disrupted, and insisted Iran would not start any war. "We won't be the initiator of war," he said.

Playing down Khamenei's comments, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said on Sunday: "Obviously it would be a very serious problem for Iran if oil were to be disrupted on the market."

Meanwhile, Khamenei said Iran was not a threat to any country and that Tehran was not seeking nuclear weapons.

"[The] accusation that we are seeking nuclear bomb is wrong, a sheer lie ...We have no target to use a nuclear bomb. It's against Islamic teachings," he said.

His comments came as European Union diplomacy chief Javier Solana was expected in Tehran to deliver new incentives for Iran to give up uranium enrichment.

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