Iran vows to teach enemies a lesson
Iran has a "powerful fist" that will "knock the teeth out" of any opponent, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said.
"Today Iran is the world's most powerful nation. We like all nations and are glad to see their prosperity. However, we remain a powerful fist that will knock the teeth out of anyone," Ahmadinejad said, according to the Iranian news agency ISNA.
Ahmadinejad spoke during his visit Friday to Kish Island in the Persian Gulf on the occasion of the National Persian Gulf Day.
The Persian Gulf, which hosts large oil deposits, has been an area of increased attention from other countries including the US.
"They want to dominate the Middle East... Though it should be mentioned that they have not reached their goal and will not do it," Ahmadinejad said, in an obvious reference to the US.
The US has not ruled out military action against Iran in case it fails to meet a demand to halt its controversial uranium enrichment programme. The US and other Western countries accuse Iran of building nuclear weapons.
Ahmadinejad said a major problem facing the Persian Gulf was the US presence in the region.
"The Persian Gulf's problem is not the issue of security, the problem is you," he said, pointing to the US.
He said the US had deployed air defence systems in the region, saying they were needed to avert a possible attack by Iran.
Iran's Revolutionary Guards carried out a wide-range military exercise, using cruise missiles both from sea and land, in the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz in April.