Iran sparks global concern with claim of ownership over Antarctica

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Defying international norms, Iran asserts Antarctica ownership and plans military mission.

IRAN, Feb 15: Iran’s Navy commander has ignited international concern by asserting Iran’s ownership of Antarctica and revealing plans for a military expedition to the South Pole, as reported by Fox News.

In a televised broadcast last fall, Iranian Navy Commander Rear Admiral Shahram Irani declared Iran’s intention to assert control over Antarctica, aiming to establish both military and scientific operations in the region.

“We have property rights in the South Pole. We have a plan to raise our flag there and carry out military and scientific work,” stated Rear Admiral Irani in late September.

The announcement has raised alarms globally, particularly in light of recent aggressive actions by Iranian-backed militias resulting in the deaths of three US soldiers in Jordan.

Speculation has arisen regarding the potential use of $6 billion in Iranian funds, unfrozen by the US, for establishing a base in Antarctica. However, a spokesperson from the US State Department clarified that these funds are designated solely for humanitarian purposes and cannot be diverted for activities in Antarctica.

Despite mounting tensions worldwide, including the Iran-backed Hamas attacks in southern Israel, the Biden administration proceeded with releasing $6 billion in sanctions relief. Iran’s President, Ebrahim Raisi, has challenged the restrictions on fund usage, asserting the regime’s authority to allocate the funds as deemed necessary.

The prospect of Iran expanding its military presence into Antarctica has prompted concerns about potential violations of multilateral agreements. Military and intelligence analyst Yonah Jeremy Bob underscored the dangers of Iran’s aggressive maneuvers, urging the US and its allies to take the nuclear threat more seriously.

While Iran’s naval ambitions extend beyond the Middle East, with reports indicating previous plans for a military presence at the Panama Canal, the international community remains vigilant. Experts note the complexities surrounding claims to Antarctica and raise questions about the recognition of such endeavors under existing treaties.

As tensions escalate, global powers are closely monitoring Iran’s actions and assessing their potential ramifications for international stability.

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