Iranian militia threatens Gulf if US strikes

Date: 11-20-06

KUWAIT CITY (AFP) - A hardline Iranian group has threatened to send suicide bombers to attack pro-American Gulf neighbours if the United States uses its military bases to strike Iran.

"If the bases in these countries are used as a launch pad for the attacking US forces, why should they expect to remain secure while we are not?" Faroz Rajai, commander of the so-called Martyrs Battalions, told Kuwait's Al-Rai newspaper on Monday.

"If some of them (Gulf states) provides a base or a camp for America to use in striking Iran, is it logical that they should expect to enjoy security," Rajai said in an answer to a question if her group would send suicide bombers to Gulf states.

The battalions are made up of "martyrdom seekers" -- or suicide attackers -- who registered as volunteers with the Committee for the Glorification of Martyrs of the Global Islamic Movement.

Rajai said the Committee was founded in 2002 and currently has five battalions with about 56,000 potential suicide attackers ready to carry out operations.

Iran is under mounting international pressure over its disputed nuclear programme, seen in the West as a cover for weapons development, and the United States has not ruled out a possible military option.

Rajai, who said her group is independent with no links with the government or its armed forcesd, also strongly criticised Gulf states which backed former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein in his eight-year war with Iran between 1980-1988.

She said she was one of the students who occupied the US embassy following the Islamic revolution in 1979 and that she would be prepared to occupy the embassy if it was ever reopened.


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