The new commander of the Iranian Navy has unveiled plans for dispatching military vessels to the Gulf of Mexico, according to the Tasnim news agency.
That means warships flying the Iranian flag will sail somewhere between the United States and the Yucatán Peninsula in international waters.
Iran’s naval forces will also make friendly visits to some South American countries which have given them ongoing support, said Navy Commander Rear Admiral Hossein Khanzadi.
Iran maintains that its military presence in international waters is aimed at demonstrating the naval power and extending a message of peace and friendship, according to Tasnim, the country’s semi-official news agency.
The maneuver is also seen as a push to project Iran’s military on a more global scale and establish international ties while the United States seeks to isolate the country.
This isn’t the first time Iran has talked about sending ships from the Persian Gulf to the Gulf of Mexico. Iran said in 2014 it would send warships into the Gulf of Mexico to protest the U.S. Navy presence in the Persian Gulf, according to USA Today.
And in 2010, Iran offered to dispatch experts during the massive BP oil spill. Reuters reported.
With information from Newsweek