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Iran naval drills designed to send message to US: general

AFP  |  Washington 

The overseeing US military operations in the said today that an Iranian naval exercise around the was meant to send a message to before it reimposed sanctions on

launched the exercise in the Gulf last week, sending dozens of small attack boats out into the -- a vital, that Iranian last month threatened to shut down.

"It's pretty clear to us that they were trying to use that exercise to send a message to us that as we approach the period of the sanctions here that they had some capabilities," told reporters.

The capabilities include ocean mines, explosive boats, coastal defense missiles and radars, he said.

Votel said he saw Qassem Soleimani, who heads the external operations Quds Force for Iran's Revolutionary Guards, as being responsible for the exercise.

"He is an individual who is perpetrating a lot of this destabilizing activity," Votel said.

"Wherever you see Iranian activity, you see " The on Tuesday reimposed sanctions on Iran, after pulled out of the 2015 multilateral nuclear deal with

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, August 09 2018. 05:50 IST