Exclusive: Iran respecting sovereignty of other nations - IRGC Col
A commander for the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps tells Al Mayadeen that the IRGC were only targeting terrorists once they attacked them.
The Islamic Revolution Guard Crops forces are monitoring the movements of terrorists in the Kurdistan region of Iraq, and they were able to prevent them from achieving their goals, Colonel Delavar Ranjibarzadeh, a commander for the IRGC in the border town of Sardasht, told Al Mayadeen on Saturday.
The IRGC forces are capable of reaching the terrorists positioned in the Iraqi Kurdistan region, "but they are not doing so out of respect for neighboring countries," Ranjibarzadeh told Al Mayadeen at the Iranian-Iraqi borders. "We are a kilometer away from the terrorists' strongholds, and we are not targeting them if they do not attack us.
He also noted that the IRGC has a lot of intelligence regarding the terrorists' activities, "and we target them when attacked. Our forces are fully capable of deterring the terrorists coming from the Kurdistan region."
"If the IRGC did not bolster their positions in this region, the terrorists would have violated it," he stressed during his interview for Al Mayadeen noting that the Iraqi forces pledged to send reinforcements to the region to provide security.
The point at which the interview took place, Al Mayadeen's correspondent said, was a key strategic area in the combat against terrorism.
"The terrorist's strongholds in Kurdistan-Iraq is very close to the point, and the IRGC has full control over the region," our correspondent noted.
The Supreme Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps and the armed and governmental forces in northern and western Iran, Brigadier General Muhammad Taqi Asanlu, said the country's borders were under the control of the Iranian armed forces, but the borders with Iraq were witnessing destabilizing activity.
Asanlu affirmed that the situation on the border was stable, and there is no infiltration of terrorist groups who continue to monitor and attempt to carry out operations across the border, pointing out that the Iranian authorities asked the authorities in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region to disband terrorist groups, but there was no response from the Iraqi side in this regard.
In a letter sent to the UN Security Council, Iran said the targeted attacks in northern Iraq were carried out in an act of national self-defense, Iranian state media reported.
It is noteworthy that since last month, the IRGC has been carrying out a series of cross-border missile and drone strikes on Iranian-Kurdish militants based in northern Iraq, who are responsible for fueling the recent riots in the country.
Exclusive: IRGC's Qaani did not threaten a ground operation in Iraq
Iranian sources told Al Mayadeen that there is no truth to what was reported by the Financial Times about a threat of a ground operation in northern Iraq by the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps' Quds Force Commander, General Qaani, during his visit to Baghdad.
The sources confirmed that General Qaani "did not talk to Iraqi officials regarding the matter and did not threaten a ground or non-land invasion of northern Iraq."
It is noteworthy that Iran's Ambassador to Baghdad, Muhammad Kazem Al-e Sadeq, said that "the commander of the Quds Force visited Iraq and met the three presidents," noting that "Iran has agreed with the central government and the authorities of the Kurdistan region to deploy Iraqi forces at the borders of Kurdistan."
Subsequently, the Iraqi government decided to draw up a plan to redeploy Iraqi forces along the borders with Iran and Turkey, which it said was "a plan to redeploy the Iraqi border forces to hold the zero line along the borders with the two countries."