Iran dismisses need for military `hotline` with US

The US has not had diplomatic relations with Iran since its 1979 revolution.

Tehran: Iran on Wednesday rejected the idea of
setting up an emergency "hotline" with Washington to avoid
unwanted military confrontations in the Gulf, Fars news agency
reported.

"We do not need such a (communication) line in the
region," Defence Minister Ahmad Vahidi was quoted as saying.

"They are seeking to set up a hotline in order to solve
any potential tensions, whereas we believe if they leave the
region, there will be no tension," General Vahidi added.

The remarks come a week after US Chairman of the Joint
Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen lamented the lack of a
"direct communication link" with Iran amid concerns it could
lead to dangerous miscalculations.

"We haven`t had a connection with Iran since 1979. Even
in the darkest days of the Cold War, we had links to the
Soviet Union," Mullen told the Carnegie Endowment for
International Peace on September 21.

"We`re not talking to Iran so we don`t understand each
other. If something happens, it`s virtually assured that we
won`t get it right, that there will be miscalculations which
would be extremely dangerous in that part of the world."

Mullen, the highest-ranking US officer, expressed his
concerns a day after the Wall Street Journal reported the
Pentagon was considering establishing a military hotline with
Tehran.

The report said Washington was especially worried about a
fleet of speedboats that often challenge US and allied
warships in the Persian Gulf.

The US has not had diplomatic relations with Iran since
its 1979 revolution and has increasingly expressed concern in
recent years about Iran`s alleged regional ambitions.

PTI

Tags: