The Iranian blackmail: blocking the Strait of Hormuz

Reports originating from a German magazine called Der Spiegel have stated that Iran has set up plans to block the Strait of Hormuz by causing an environmental disaster. According to the report, Iran is planning to do such an act in order to have its sanctions lifted which are affecting its economy.  It is said to be codenamed “Muddy Water” and it is now awaiting the approval of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to be put into effect.
Although the magazine has not named a source nor has there been any independent confirmation of its claim that the Chief of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards being behind the plan which is to spill oil in the strait by steering a tanker onto a rock and the bring navigation across it to a halt.
The magazine stated that the ambitions of the Iranians “is to block shipping temporarily through the contamination, to ‘punish’ adjacent Arab states that are hostile to Iran and to force the West to take part in a large-scale cleanup of the waters – and possibly thereby a suspension of sanctions against Tehran.” This will lead to a decontamination exercise in the strait which will require the collaboration of Iran in order to make it successful and a temporal suspension of its embargoes. “Iranian firms, some of them owned by the Revolutionary Guards, could even profit from the rescue operations,” the magazine added.
Only a little above half of the world’s seaborne oil exports don’t pass through the Strait of Hormuz thereby making it a strategic and important crossing point. Iran has been threatening to block the passage if its nuclear facilities should come under any foreign attack and major world powers have warned that that it will be equal to a declaration war.

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