UN Voices Concern About Rising Tensions Between U.S., Iran

Hawkish White House advisers and there allies are said to be pushing for a military confrontation with Iran.

Trump has blown hot and cold over Iran, leading many in Washington to fear he is rushing to conflict, but then indicating that he has no desire to embroil the United States in another distant war.

Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan, who was joined at the briefing by the USA military chief, Gen. Joseph Dunford, said the U.S. response had made an impact.

"Fake News put out a typically false statement, without any knowledge that the United States was trying to set up a negotiation with Iran".

He cautioned that that doesn't mean the threats have gone away.

Tensions have risen further this month with Washington announcing more economic measures against Tehran, before deploying a carrier group and B-52 bombers to the Gulf over unspecified alleged Iranian "threats".

Brennan, an outspoken Trump critic, does not have a formal briefing planned but is prepared to answer questions on Iran - and is willing to do the same for Republicans, said a person familiar with the matter who was not authorized to discuss it publicly. And on May 8, a year to the day that Trump pulled out of the deal, he announced further sanctions on Iran's metal exports, including iron, steel, aluminum and copper.

Trump warned Iranian leaders not to call for talks unless they were prepared to negotiate. The Trump administration has recently been increasingpressure on Iran with sanctions and a military buildup near its territorialwaters.

"There will be painful consequences for everybody (if) there is an escalation against Iran, that's for sure", he said", Zarif told CNN. "I think Iranians think that our moves are offensive, we think their moves are offensive, that's how you get into wars by mistake", he said.

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Kamalvandi said Iran had informed the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United Nations nuclear watchdog, of the development.

However, he said he would welcome talks.

"I have yet to see any exhibited strategy", said Democrat Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger of Virginia as she left the meeting with Brennan. That area is home to many Iran-supported militias. The unilateral nature of Washington's sanctions is prime evidence of Iran's victimhood, Rouhani said.

The United States military has increased its presence in the Middle East this month and told non-emergency government officials at its Iraq Embassy in Iraq to leave, due to threats that Iranian proxies could attack American interests.

Zarif dismissed the United States leader's comments as "genocidal taunts"."Iranians have stood tall for millennia while aggressors all gone", he wrote on Twitter. Since Trump withdrew America a year ago from the pact, the US has re-imposed previous sanctions and come up with new ones, as well as warning other nations they would be subject to sanctions as well if they import Iranian oil.

In Venezuela, the US -backed plan to oust socialist President Nicolas Maduro has stalled as Cuba, Russia and other American adversaries have stepped in to prop up the embattled regime.

On Sunday, a rocket landed near the U.S. Embassy in the Green Zone of Iraq's capital of Baghdad, days after nonessential U.S. staff were ordered to evacuate from diplomatic posts in the country. No-one was reported injured.

The flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln in the Arabian Sea, on May 19, 2019.

Quoting an official at the Natanz enrichment plant, the semi-official Tasnim news service said Iran was accelerating the rate of production at which it refines uranium to 3.67% fissile purity, suitable for civilian nuclear power generation.

  • Sonia Alvarado