TEHRAN, July 19 (UPI) -- Iran plans to extend its naval presence in the Atlantic Ocean, Rear Adm. Habibollah Sayyari said.
Sayyari told the semi-official Fars news agency the navy is waiting for final approval to dispatch a fleet of ships.
Iran, he said, will "continue its presence in the Mediterranean Sea, the Suez Canal, south of the Indian Ocean and the high seas."
"That we are capable of having a strong presence in the Indian Ocean, Mediterranean Sea, Red Sea and Gulf of Aden to defend the Islamic Republic's interest is an indication of the country's power," he said in an interview with IRNA, the official news agency.
Earlier this month Iranian submarines returned after a two-month mission with the 14th fleet in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden where they were deployed to protect the country's cargo ships from Somali piracy, Fars said.