NICOSIA, Cyprus — Iraq claimed it recaptured a strategic radar platform in the Persian Gulf with a pre-dawn commando assault Wednesday, 24 hours after Iranian frogmen and marines seized it.
The Iraqis use Al Amik platform, a converted oil-loading facility, to guide their warplanes in attacks on tankers carrying Iranian oil.
Iran claimed its forces retained "complete control" of the area around Al Amik. It indicated that the platform itself had been stripped of radar and other military equipment, set afire and abandoned.
Conflicting claims cannot be reconciled because neither combatant admits foreign journalists to battle zones except on rare guided tours.
Baghdad radio said the Iranian marines on Al Amik were "completely wiped out" in the battle. The half-square-mile platform is 21 miles south of Iraq's Faw Peninsula, most of which has been occupied by Iranian forces since February.