Iran says it may cut diplomatic relations with the United Arab Emirates if the Arab nation keeps repeating claims to three Gulf islands that are controlled by Tehran.

Iran took control of the Persian Gulf islands in 1971, after British forces left the region. The islands dominate the approach to the Strait of Hormuz, a key waterway through which about one-fifth of the world's oil supply passes.

The news website of Iran's parliament, ICANA.ir, quoted foreign ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast as saying that Iran will either cut or reduce ties with the UAE if it repeats "anti-Iranian, baseless claims."

The UAE has repeatedly claimed the tiny Abu Musa and the nearby Greater and Lesser Tunb islands. At the U.N. General Assembly last month, it said Iran's "occupation" violates international law.