A Lebanese daily revealed the details of Iran’s military gift due to be delivered to Beirut after an upcoming visit by Defense Minister Samir Moqbel to Tehran.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran has specified the types of equipment it can present to the Lebanese army in a letter to the foreign ministry and the foreign ministry has submitted the letter to Moqbel,” a report by al-Akhbar said on Saturday.
“Iran is ready to deliver a number of TOW (anti-tank) missiles and its special rockets, night goggles, 120-mm mortar rounds, and munitions, 60-mm artillery and its shells, munitions of T55 and T62 tanks, munitions of 155-mm cannon and DShK (Dushka) and its munitions,” the letter said.
The newspaper also reported that the US has sent official and unofficial messages to Lebanon and threatened Beirut not to accept the military gift, or Washington would stop its aids to the Lebanese army.
Last week, Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Shamkhani announced that Iran plans to gift a military tool or weapon to the Lebanese army in the near future.
“The gift will be sent in the near future and it will be delivered to the Lebanese defense minister during his upcoming visit to Iran,” Shamkhani said after meeting Lebanese Prime Minister Tammam Salam in Beirut late in September.
A few days later, senior officials in Beirut said Iran had presented a list of military tools and weapons to be gifted to the Lebanese army to help the Arab country in its fight against terrorism.
Moqbel told the country’s al-Manar TV last Friday night that he would visit Iran at the head of a high-ranking military delegation within the next ten days to study Tehran’s pledged arms aids to Lebanon.
“The details of the arms aids which Tehran is ready to supply to the Lebanese army will be studied in the presence of a delegation of high-ranking officers,” he added.
Moqbel said that the Lebanese army will assess and study Iran’s weaponry proposals after returning to Beirut.
He expressed the hope that other countries would also present Beirut arms gifts proportionate to the needs of the Lebanese army.
On September 31, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir Abdollahian announced Tehran’s plans to assist the Lebanese army in fighting terrorism.
“The Lebanese army should be strengthened for its campaign against terrorism,” Amir Abdollahian told FNA.
“Any assistance by Iran to the Lebanese army will be within the framework of war on terrorism and the international laws,” he added.
Asked about the US officials’ reaction to Iran’s possible assistance to the Lebanese army, Amir Abdollahian said, “Instead of adventurous measures which merely intensify extremism, the US should avoid preventing reinvigoration of the regional states and armies if it favors a materialization of real and effective war on terrorism.”