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Posted on Tuesday, 30 October 2012 18:25

Visiting Sudan: Iran brings peace

By Konye Obaji Ori

Photo©ReutersIran has dispatched a navy task force to Sudan six days after Israel allegedly bombed an arms factory linked to Tehran in Khartoum.

 

The task force arrived aboard a Kharg, a stock vessel that can carry three helicopters, and the Shahid Naqdi, a corvette-class vessel from Iran.

The move sparked speculation in the international community on the connection between the explosions at the al-Yarmouk military depot and ammunition plant, which left two people dead.

There were reports that Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) had used the facility to produce weapons for the Palestinian Islamist movement, Hamas.

Experts say rockets and other weapons were being manufactured in the facility before they were smuggled from Sudan, through Egypt, to the Gaza Strip.

On October 24, four Israeli warplanes allegedly attacked the factory with two one-tonne bombs.

Following the attack on the facility, the Sudanese government issued an official complaint to the United Nations.

However, Israel has neither confirmed nor denied the attacks, although experts say the Jewish state has carried out a series of raids inside Sudan in the past.

But at the docking ceremony on Monday, the Iranian officials who met Sudanese navy commanders at Port Sudan were quick to calm concerned observers with the "message of peace and security to neighbouring countries".

According to the Iranian navy, Tehran only wants to ensure security for seafaring and shipping lanes against marine terrorism and piracy.

Iranian vessels have been part of an international armada of warships patrolling the Gulf of Aden, near the entrance to the Red Sea.



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