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now it's been denied by iran as well as by the pentagon

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  • Greg Cannon
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4184175.stm Tuesday, 18 January, 2005, 14:36 GMT Iran rejects US operations claims Iran has dismissed a report in the US
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 18, 2005
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      http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4184175.stm

      Tuesday, 18 January, 2005, 14:36 GMT

      Iran rejects US operations claims

      Iran has dismissed a report in the US media that US
      commandos are conducting missions on Iranian territory
      to identify targets for possible strikes.

      Supreme National Security Council spokesman Ali
      Aghamohammadi said it would be naive to believe the
      report, which he called psychological warfare.

      Earlier, Iranian Defence Minister Ali Shamkhani said
      Iran had the military strength to deter attacks.

      US President George W Bush says he does not rule out
      force against Iran.

      Washington has called on Tehran to reveal more about
      its nuclear plan, accusing it of developing nuclear
      weapons.

      Iran insists it only wants to produce electricity.

      The claims on US operations on Iranian territory were
      made by respected investigative journalist Seymour
      Hersh and published in the New Yorker magazine.

      The Pentagon has described the report as based on
      rumour, innuendo and conspiracy theories, but has not
      categorically denied that US troops have been on the
      ground in Iran.

      'Ridiculous'

      In the first official Iranian reaction to Mr Hersh's
      article, Mr Aghamohammadi told Iranian radio it was
      naive to imagine American spies could carry out secret
      reconnaissance missions inside Iran.

      He said it was not easy for US commandos to enter the
      country.

      His views were echoed by the Teheran Times which
      dismissed the story as a "ridiculous bluff".

      It said the US and Israel knew that attacking Iran
      would be biting off more than they could chew, and
      would only choke them if they tried it.

      The paper warned that Iran had acquired massive
      military might and was prepared to attack any intruder
      with a fearsome reign of fire and death.

      Defence Minister Ali Shamkhani said Iran did not fear
      attack, in comments that were published on Tuesday but
      may not be a direct response to Hersh's article.

      "We can claim that we have rapidly produced equipment
      that has resulted in the greatest deterrent," he said,
      without giving further details.
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