On Wednesday, Bolton alleged that the May 12 incident involving four commercial vessels near the port of Fujahrah had been caused by Iranian naval mines, without providing any evidence to substantiate his claim. “I think it is clear these (tanker attacks) were naval mines almost certainly from Iran,” claimed the American official, speaking at a press conference in the Emirati capital Abu Dhabi, Presstv Reported.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov fundamentally questioned the remarks in an interview with Sputnik, which the Russian news agency published on Thursday.
“We've seen countless situations when Americans adjusted certain facts or events to political orders and their own narrow national beliefs of what happens and how it happens, and how something should be done,” Ryabkov said, adding, “This is not even the UK 'highly likely,' this is something worse. They are just presumptuously imposing their opinion on the whole world or at least trying to do so."
The Russian official also warned that such unfounded statements served to escalate standing tensions. "Such policies are especially dangerous in the Middle East.”
“This is why we will continue calmly making effort to ensure that common sense eventually prevails,” he noted, and advised adoption of “a more sensible approach” where “responsible officials engage in diplomacy rather than propaganda."
Later on Wednesday, Iran’s Foreign Ministry rejected Bolton’s claim as "ridiculous." Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Moussavi said Bolton and “other warmongers” had to know that the Islamic Republic would patiently and vigilantly work to prevent them from fulfilling “their ominous schemes to create chaos in the region."
Bolton has earned notoriety as the most hawkish figure in the US administration, openly promoting military conflict with Iran and other countries.
Iran has called Bolton a member of the anti-Iran B-Team -- also featuring Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman -- which is trying hard to target the people of Iran with “economic terrorism.”
Saudi Arabia and the UAE have been supportive of the US’s policy of “maximum pressure” against Iran, which has seen Washington returning its sanctions against Tehran, and militarizing the region.
Earlier in the year, the Arab states vowed to make up for potential shortages of Iran’s crude after the US avowed an intention to try to reduce Iran’s oil exports to “zero” as part of the policy.
Russia supports Japan's plan to tone down US-Iran tensions
Meanwhile, a Japanese official said on Thursday that Russia has expressed support for Japan's plan to play a role in easing tensions between Iran and the US.
The Japanese official made the remarks to during a media briefing after a meeting of Japan and Russia's foreign and defense ministers.
Traditionally Japan has had friendly ties with Iran," the official said, adding, "There were comments from the Japanese side that Japan aims to play a role by taking advantage of such ties. The Russian side made a very positive comment in response."