Two Iranian warships have docked in Syria after receiving permission from Egypt's caretaker government to pass through the Suez Canal, the first Iranian ships to do so since Iran’s 1979 Islamic Revolutions.
Iran’s Rear Adm. Habibollah Sayyari, told reporters the ships were not performing military exercises but were “on a routine and friendly visit and carry the message of peace and friendship to world countries,” according to Reuters.
Israel had called the ships a provocation and put its Navy on alert. The mission to sail past Israel was successful and done without regard for Israel’s concerns, the Iranian news agency IRNA quoted Sayyari as saying. "The Zionist regime may create concern for itself and look at this issue from its own view but we will carry out our plans regardless of this regime and in coordination with the friendly nation in the region," Sayari said.
Iran had sent a formal request to Egypt’s caretaker government in the wake of President Hosni Mubarak’s step down, and it was granted by the defense ministry after assurances that no military equipment, nuclear or chemical contents were in the ships, BNO reported.