LONDON, Sept 28 (Reuters) – Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) told Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates on Friday to respect Tehran’s “red lines” or face retaliation, as the United States and its Gulf allies increase pressure on Tehran to curb its regional influence.
Iran accuses Saudi Arabia and the UAE of funding five gunmen who attacked a military parade in Iran last Saturday and killed 25 people, 12 of them members of the elite IRGC. Saudi Arabia and the UAE have denied any involvement.
“If you cross our red lines, we will surely cross yours. You know the storm the Iranian nation can create,” the Fars news agency quoted Brigadier General Hossein Salami, deputy head of the Guards, as saying.
Addressing worshippers attending Friday prayers in Tehran, Salami said in a strongly-worded speech: “Stop creating plots and tensions. You are not invincible. You are sitting in a glass house and cannot tolerate the revenge of the Iranian nation… We have shown self-restraint.”
Salami also told the United States to “stop supporting the terrorists or they will pay the price”.
Iran has accused the United States of supporting the assailants who carried out last Saturday’s attack. Washington has denied having any prior knowledge of the incident.
The Revolutionary Guards vowed on Sunday to exact “deadly and unforgettable” vengeance for Saturday’s attack.
Shi’ite Muslim Iran and Sunni Muslim Saudi Arabia are arch-rivals in the Middle East and support opposing sides in the Syrian and Yemen conflicts.
(Reporting by Bozorgmehr Sharafedin Editing by Gareth Jones)