Iran Treated US Sailors Leniently: Commander
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A senior Iranian military commander rejected the US anger at the January arrest of its sailors by Iran in the Persian Gulf, stressing that Tehran could have treated the captives very sternly.
Speaking to reporters, Deputy Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Brigadier General Massoud Jazayeri said Iran’s behavior toward the American sailors was lenient.
Rejecting Washington’s anger at the incident, General Jazayeri said the US is used to being considered a major power, but Iran will never give in to Americans.
Back in January, the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Navy captured 10 US Navy sailors inside Iran’s territorial waters in the Persian Gulf, but released them a day later following an apology and after technical and operational investigations indicated that the intrusion into Iranian territorial waters was unintentional.
In a statement on Thursday, the US navy said it had lost confidence in Commander Eric Rasch, who was the executive officer of the squadron that included the 10 sailors at the time of the January incident. He was responsible for the training and readiness of the more than 400 sailors in the unit.
A navy official said Rasch failed to provide effective leadership, leading to a lack of oversight, complacency and failure to maintain standards in the unit.
Rasch had been relieved of his command duties and reassigned, the US navy said.