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Thursday, October 17th, 2019

US emphasizes diplomacy in standoff with Iran

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The United States said it will

make its case against Iran at the United Nations this week, insisting it

wants to give diplomacy every opportunity to succeed in the wake of a

devastating attack on a vital Saudi oil complex.

Setting the stage for President Donald Trump’s address to the annual UN

General Assembly on Tuesday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo put aside threats of US military retaliation against Iran for the attack.

President Trump and I both want to give diplomacy every opportunity to

succeed, Pompeo said in an interview with ABC’s This Week.

Our administration’s taking this on in a serious way and we are working

diligently to see that this has a diplomatic outcome, he said.

But make no mistake about it, if we’re unsuccessful in that and Iran

continues to strike out in this way, I am confident that President Trump will

make the decisions necessary to achieve our objectives.

The United States has accused Tehran of carrying out the air attacks

that set aflame Saudi Arabia’s Abqaiq plant and the Khurais oil field

September 14, knocking out half the kingdom’s oil production.

Trump ordered stepped up sanctions against Iran, and a

relatively modest deployment of US troops to the Gulf, primarily focused on

defensive missions like air and missile defense.

On Sunday, before leaving the White House on a trip to Texas, Trump once

again left open the possibility of an unscheduled meeting on the sidelines of

the UN General Assembly with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

Nothing is ever off the table, completely, but I have no intention of

meeting with Iran and that doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen, Trump said. I’m a very flexible person, but we have no intention. It’s not set up.

The US diplomatic offensive comes as Iran has sharpened its tone with a

warning from a Revolutionary Guard Corps commander that Iran is ready for any type of scenario.

Whoever wants their land to become the main battlefield, go ahead, Major General Hossein Salami told a news conference in Tehran.

Pompeo defended the US strategy of applying maximum pressure

on Iran through sanctions against criticism it has resulted in Iran lashing

out.

He said the US sanctions campaign was just getting started.

We hope the United Nations will take a strong position. It was designed

exactly for this kind of thing, where one country attacks another country and we hope the United Nations will rally around what it is.

SOURCE: NAM NEWS NETWORK

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