US to Iran: Shutting Hormuz 'Will Not Be Tolerated'

War of words escalates over proposed sanctions
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 28, 2011 2:52 PM CST
Members of the Iran Navy participate in a drill Wednesday in the Sea of Oman.   (AP Photo/International Iran Photo Agency, Ali Mohammadi)

(Newser) – The rhetoric between the US and Iran over the Strait of Hormuz is heating up, reports MSNBC. After Tehran threatened to shut down the strait if the West imposes sanctions, the US Navy's 5th Fleet responded thusly: "Anyone who threatens to disrupt freedom of navigation in an international strait is clearly outside the community of nations; any disruption will not be tolerated."

France issued a similar warning, notes the New York Times. Iran is angry over threatened sanctions that would hurt its ability to export petroleum. Two high-ranking Iranian officials have said it would be easy for the military to close the strait and choke off a major supply route for the world's oil. In the meantime, Iran is conducting a naval drill near the strait. (Read more Strait of Hormuz stories.)

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