By Arye Green/TPS • 24 October, 2019
An Israeli delegation participating in a Working Group on Maritime and Aviation Security in Manama, Bahrain, earlier this week underscored the need to counter Iran’s aggression in the region, which has recently been focused on the traffic of oil tankers for the Gulf.
Delegations from 30 countries attended the event, which is part of the Warsaw Process launched by the US and Poland in February this year.
The Working Group focused on promoting maritime and aviation security in the region by increasing coordination, enforcement of legal tools, United Nations Security Council resolutions, and other measures aimed at preventing the smuggling of conventional and non-conventional weapons.
One of the main topics of discussion was the Iranian aggression in the region and how it can be countered through sanctions, as well as regional and international security cooperation.
In recent months, tensions in the Persian Gulf have peaked as Iran attacked several ships in the region and seized a British oil tanker, responding to the enforcement of western sanctions against the Iranian regime. The US subsequently deployed augmented military assets to the region.
Dana Benvenisti, director of the Department for Regional Security and Counterterrorism at the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs who led the delegation, warned the working group members of the Iranian weapons being deployed in the region.
“We are living in a time of potentially dangerous developments, in which Iran is spreading precision-guided ammunition, with an emphasis on missiles, via ground, air and maritime routes to vast parts of our region. The threat to global peace and stability, commerce, secure supply of energy and the freedom of navigation, which stems from the proliferation of Iranian weapons, is of great concern to all of us in this room”, she told the participating delegations.
Benvenisti suggested the group create regional and international frameworks to counter the proliferation of conventional weapons, as well as weapons of mass destruction.
“Iran poses the multifaceted greatest threat to our region. Our civilizations, since ancient times, flourished based on a lively web of lines of communication that facilitated the flow of goods, people, ideas, beliefs, culture and values,” Benvenisti, saying that “we should not let Iran turn this web of rich and vital exchanges into a vicious net of hate, destruction and violence.
“The duty to stop this is ours. Of all of us,” she concluded.