Iran's security body said a U.S. announcement of sending a carrier strike group and bombers to the Middle East to send a message to Tehran amounted to "psychological warfare", the semi-official Tasnim news agency said on Tuesday.
U.S. national security adviser John Bolton said on Sunday the United States was deploying the Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group and a bomber task force to the Middle East to send a message to Iran.
"Bolton's statement is a clumsy use of a burnt-out happening for psychological warfare," said Keyvan Khosravi, spokesman for the Supreme National Security Council, according to Tasnim, adding that the carrier had arrived in the Mediterranean weeks ago.
In Iran, the semi-official ISNA news agency on Monday quoted an anonymous official as saying that Iranian President Hassan Rohani planned a broadcast address Wednesday and might discuss “counteractions” Tehran will take over America’s withdrawal from the international nuclear deal.
Bolton said that the deployment is meant "to send a clear and unmistakable message to the Iranian regime that any attack on United States interests or on those of our allies will be met with unrelenting force."
A U.S. official said the forces "have been ordered to the region as deterrence to what has been seen as potential preparations by Iranian forces and its proxies that may indicate possible attacks on U.S. forces in the region."
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The official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the United States was not expecting any imminent attack on U.S. forces.