Tehran on Sunday called the recent naval confrontation between the US and Iran in the Gulf a failed US plot to tarnish Iran's image in the region.
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammad-Ali Hosseini said the incident was blown up by the US in a failed effort to expose Iran as a threat before the visit of US President George W Bush to the Gulf states.
Five small Iranian boats approached three US warships in international waters in the Strait of Hormuz last Sunday and according to a video released by the Pentagon, the Iranian side said "I am coming to you" and "you will explode."
President Bush characterized the incident as "dangerous" and "provocative" and warned the Iranians of "serious consequences" if it happens again.
While calling the Pentagon video a fake, Tehran said the incident was routine in the Gulf and presented its own video showing an Iranian Revolutionary Guard asking the US vessel in English via radio for identification, course and purpose.
After the US side replied that it was operating in international waters, the Iranian guard transferred the information in Persian to what apparently seemed to be his superior or headquarters and, according to the Iranian version, left the scene.
According to a report in the Washington Post on Friday, US Navy spokesman Rear Admiral Frank Thorp IV acknowledged that the taped threats to bomb US warships could have come from another source.
Referring to Bush call's on Iran to stop extremists and terrorists in Iraq during a visit to US troops in Kuwait City Saturday, Iranian spokesman Hosseini said that these were "just repeated baseless claims."
" Iran's stance on Iraq's security is clear. Our wish is to strengthen security and stability in Iraq," the spokesman said.
Hosseini added that Bush should avail himself of the time until the end of his term to reconsider his policies towards Iran and in the region. ( Dpa )