MOSCOW, May 23. /TASS/. Washington is provoking Tehran to sternly retaliate, trying to look for a reason for direct confrontation, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said at a briefing on Thursday.
"The United States is escalating the situation by sending aircraft carriers and bombers to the Persian Gulf region. These actions are accompanied by war-mongering statements and groundless and unproven accusations addressed to Iran saying that the country is involved in some sabotaging operations on the adjacent territories and posing threats to American diplomats in the neighboring Iraq," Zakharova pointed out.
"It seems that by adopting sanctions, applying military pressure and resorting to sharp and aggressive rhetoric, Washington is deliberately provoking Iran into sterner retaliation measures and looking for a reason to engage in direct confrontation. This is a very dangerous policy. Not only is it destroying the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on the Iranian nuclear program, but also can result in broader destabilization across the whole Middle Eastern Region," the diplomat stressed.
The political confrontation between Iran and the United States led to a sharp exacerbation of the situation in the Persian Gulf Region after Washington made the decision to send a strike navy battleship group led by the Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier. The US administration underlined that they are not striving for conflict with Iran, but will defend the US interests in the region. Pentagon described the move as the response to the evidence of heightened readiness of Iran to carry out offensives against the US forces and US interests. On Tuesday, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in an interview with CNN that Washington is engaged in dangerous games by expanding its military presence in the Gulf Region.