Iranian ships and submarines have deployed an undisclosed number of Iranian troops and weapons at the Eritrean port town of Assab at the Horn of Africa in the Arabian Sea just below the Strait of Hormuz.
As such, the port town is in a unique postion its location allows it to control and monitor one of the world's most strategic shipping routes.
According to local reports Iranian troops and a large number of long range ballistic missiles have also been deployed at a military base at the port and Iranian unmanned drones daily patrol the area..
It appears that Iran is using the pretext of an accord it signed with Eritrea to revamp a Russian built refinery there to station its troops and maintain a strong military presence with full command of the Straits of Hormuz . At the same time as the world's second largest importer of gasoline, its deal with Eritrea guarantees it a constant supply free from international intervention. The President of Eritrea has already granted Teheran complete and exclusive control of the Eritrean Oil Refinery
Meanwhile there is concern in Israel over reports suggesting Iran has recently tripled its missile arsenal and is estimated to have over 100 Shhab 3 missiles that are capable of striking any point in Israel compared with the thirty missiles it had in its arsenal at the beginning of 2008. While the missiles are armed with one ton conventional warheads they are also capable of carrying nuclear warheads.
This latest build-up potentially points to an Iranian intent to launch a protracted counter-strike against those who seek to destroy its nuclear program.12/09/08