Iran's army commander: U.S. prepares for long presence in Middle East
Everything indicates that Americans are preparing for a long-term presence in the Middle East region, Commander of Iranian Army's Ground Force Brigadier General Ahmadreza Pourdastan said, IRNA reported.
"The exit of U.S. forces from Iraq is a result of changes in the US strategic plans for the region," Pourdastan added.
He reiterated that the retaining of the US military bases in Bahrain, the UAE and Qatar as well as their overwhelming presence in Afghanistan and deployment of their forces from Iraq to Kuwait, are among the facts indicating that Americans have come to stay for a long time in the region.
"Americans are pulling out their forces from Iraq only because of the agreements which they have signed with the Iraqi government and have to observe to save their face," Pourdastan said.
"However, U.S. is still interested in retaining its presence in the region to be able to control the route of energy transfer by installing a defense line which includes Kuwait, the US bases in the UAE, Qatar and Bahrain," he added.
Pourdastan stressed that Washington is keeping its training forces in Iraq but moving its operational forces to other parts of the region to give them the chance to keep their combat capabilities.
The army commander underscored that Iran was constantly monitoring the US army and was analyzing their movement and strategies.
Edited by: S. Isayev