Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamenei urges military to increase ‘preparedness’

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei delivering a speech to military commanders in Tehran, on April 19, 2015

Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamenei urged his armed forces Sunday to increase their “defensive preparedness”, denouncing a US warning that military action is an option if there is no nuclear deal.

In a speech to commanders and troops, the supreme leader said “the other side with insolence threaten us all the time”, denying Iran was seeking an atomic bomb and insisting its military doctrine is defensive.

Khamenei’s remarks came after General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, reiterated last week that should nuclear talks with Iran fail “the military option… is intact”.

The United States has long said bombing Iran’s nuclear sites and other key facilities may be necessary if Tehran does not rein in its atomic activities…