Iran Has No Military Presence in Yemen, Iraq, Commander Reiterates
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Commander of Iran's Army Ground Force Brigadier General Ahmad Reza Pourdastan on Saturday firmly rejected allegations about the presence of Iranian military forces in Yemen and Iraq.
Speaking on the sidelines of military parades in Tehran on the occasion of the National Army Day, Pourdastan criticized the Saudi-led air strikes against Yemen, and rejected the allegations of Iran's military involvement in the war-torn Arab country.
"Given our international commitments, we cannot give military assistance to Yemen," the top commander said, but expressed Iran's readiness to provide Yemenis with medical assistance.
Saudis are monitoring all developments in and around Yemen and are confident that Iran has no military presence there, the commander further explained.
Saudi Arabia and its allies started their deadly attacks on Yemen on March 26 in a bid to restore power to the fugitive former President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi, a close ally of Riyadh. Yemeni sources say the air strikes have killed 2,600 people so far.
Elsewhere in his comments, Pourdastan underlined that Iran has no military presence in Iraq, either, stressing that Tehran only provides advisory assistance to Baghdad in the fight against the ISIL terrorists.
Iranian officials have made it clear that Iraq is capable of defending itself and there is no need to send any combat troops to the Arab country.
The ISIL militants made advances in northern and western Iraq in summer 2014, after capturing swaths of northern Syria.
However, a combination of concentrated attacks by the Iraqi military and the popular forces, who rushed to take arms after top Iraqi cleric Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani issued a fatwa calling for fight against the militants, have blunted the edge of the ISIL offensive.