Irans security body said a US announcement of sending a carrier strike group and bombers to the Middle East to send a message to Tehran amounted to “psychological warfare”, the semi-official Tasnim news agency said on Tuesday.

US National Security Adviser John Bolton said on Sunday the United States was deploying the Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group and a bomber task force to the Middle East to send a message to Iran.

“Boltons statement is a clumsy use of a burnt-out happening for psychological warfare,” said Keyvan Khosravi, spokesman for the Supreme National Security Council, according to Tasnim, adding that the carrier had arrived in the Mediterranean weeks ago.

US acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said on Monday he had approved dispatching the carrier strike group and bombers due to indications of a “credible threat by Iranian regime forces”. Shanahan provided no details of the underlying intelligence.

Irans state-run Press TV earlier said: “The deployment seems to be a regularly scheduled one by the US Navy, and Bolton has just tried to talk it up.”

Iran said last month it was prepared for a US decision to end waivers granted to buyers of Iranian oil, as the elite Revolutionary Guards repeated their threat to close the strategic Strait of Hormuz in the Gulf if Tehran was barred from using it. Around 30 percent of the worlds seaborne oil exports get shipped through the strait.

While neither Shanahan nor Bolton elaborated on the gist of US intelligence, other US officials told Reuters there were “multiple, credible threats” against US forces on land, including in Iraq, by Iran and proxy forces and at sea.

Last week, President Donald Trumps administration said it would end waivers for countries buying Iranian oil in an attempt to reduce Irans crude exports to zero following Washingtons withdrawal from world powers 2015 nuclear deal with Tehran.

The administration also blacklisted IranRead More – Source

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