A high-profile Iranian government official issued a warning on Thursday in which he cautioned Israel not to engage in a military operation against his country, amid heightened tensions in the wake of an attack on an Israeli-affiliated oil tanker, as the Washington Examiner reports.
The Islamic republic’s foreign ministry spokesperson, Saeed Khatibzadeh warned in a Tweet that was pointedly intended for Israeli eyes, “We state this clearly, ANY foolish act against Iran will be met with a DECISIVE response. Don’t test us.”
It is Khatibzadeh’s position that Israeli leaders have violated international law via its recent pronouncement that it was open to a range of tactics, including military action, to rein in Iranian acts of aggression.
Israel has implored the United Nations Security Council and its membership to support “diplomatic, economic, and even military deeds” to counter a drone attack last week on the Mercer Street oil tanker, killing two, while the vessel was in international waters, as Fox News noted.
The tanker, which was hit off of Oman in the Arabian Sea, is managed by a company operated by an Israeli billionaire, and the United States, the United Kingdom, and Israel have all pinned responsibility for the attack on Iran.
In response, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz told the U.N Security Council that Iran is now “only around 10 weeks away from acquiring weapons-grade materials necessary for a nuclear weapon.”
“Therefore, it is time to act. The world must apply economic sanctions and take operative action against the Iran Revolutionary Guard Corps,” Gantz added. “We can’t tag Iran as solely an Israeli problem and absolve the rest of the world from this issue,” he continued.
Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid told a number of Security Council member state ambassadors on Wednesday that the tanker attack “is an international crime. So my question to you is: What is the international community going to do about it? Is there still such a thing as international law? And does the world have the ability and willpower to enforce the law?”
Making Israel’s stance on the situation even clearer, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said on Thursday, “The Iranians need to understand that it is impossible to sit peacefully in Tehran and, from there, ignite the entire Middle East. That is over,” as the Examiner noted.