DUBAI, Dec 21 (Reuters) - Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Saturday that Tehran welcomes Japan’s decision not to join a U.S.-led naval mission in the Gulf, in remarks carried by state television.
“Japan has announced it will not take part in the Americans’ plans for security in the (Gulf) region ... which is something we welcome,” Rouhani said after returning from a visit to Malaysia and Japan. “Japan is sending a surveillance vessel but not to the Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz.”
The planned Japanese operation is set to cover high seas in the Gulf of Oman, the northern Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Aden, but not the Strait of Hormuz. (Reporting by Dubai newsroom Editing by Frances Kerry)