June 16: As the United States is bent on fabricating blame on Iran for oil tanker attacks, Russia reminded other countries about the then-secretary of state, Colin Powell, brandished a vial with white powder meant to illustrate the dangers of anthrax,and other weapons of mass destruction, which the US were accusing Saddam Hussein of stockpiling and justifying the US invasion of Iraq.
US campaign that led for a war against the Middle Eastern country in 2003 serves as a cautionary tale against saber-rattling and finger-pointing amid current tensions in the Persian Gulf, the Kremlin’s spokesperson has said.
“We didn’t forget the vials with white powder. We remember and, therefore, have learnt to show restraint in our assessments,” Dmitry Peskov said on a TV show aired on ‘Rossiya 1’ channel on Sunday.
The US is trying to “build international consensus” around what officials claim is Iran’s responsibility for damaging two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman, as UK officials joined the US in formally accusing Iran of carrying out the attacks.
The US released grainy surveillance footage of an alleged Iran Revolutionary Guard patrol boat, with men who appear to remove a magnetic limpet mine from the hull of one of the ships.
The Kremlin’s spokesperson stated that no sufficient proof has yet been presented to blame anyone. Jumping to conclusions and making hasty decisions could lead to dire consequences, he said.
The UK Foreign Office issued a statement saying: “It is almost certain that a branch of the Iranian military – the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps – attacked the two tankers on 13 June. No other state or non-state actor could plausibly have been responsible.”
The statement continued: “There is recent precedent for attacks by Iran against oil tankers. The Emirati-led investigation of the 12 May attack on four oil tankers near the port of Fujairah [in the UAE] concluded that it was conducted by a sophisticated state actor. We are confident that Iran bears responsibility for that attack.”
The United Nations secretary general, António Guterres, called for an independent investigation.
“It’s very important to know the truth and it’s very important that responsibilities are clarified. Obviously that can only be done if there is an independent entity that verifies those facts,” Guterres said.