In a recent interview, Saudi Arabia’s minister
of state for foreign affairs Adel al-Jubeir has said all options, including a
military response, are open after attacks on two oil facilities, which it has
blamed on Iran.
A US assessment claiming Iran was behind the attacks on the Saudi oil
facilities was backed up by France, the UK, and Germany this week.
However, Iran has denied any involvement.
The Iran-aligned rebel Houthi movement in Yemen, which is fighting a
Saudi-led coalition in the country’s civil war, has said it launched drones at
Saudi officials say the range, scale and complexity of the attacks exceeded
the capabilities of the Houthis.
Meanwhile, the US re-imposed economic sanctions against Iran last year after
abandoning a 2015 nuclear deal, and in May said it would attempt to force all
countries to stop buying Iranian oil and put pressure on Iran to negotiate a
new nuclear accord.
On September 25, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters at the UN
that the US wanted “a peaceful resolution with the Islamic Republic of
He added: “In the end, it’ll be
up to the Iranians to make that decision, or whether they’ll choose violence
French President Emmanuel Macron had attempted to broker an historic meeting
between President Donald Trump and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.
However, President Rouhani told delegates at the UN that he refused to meet President
Trump while Iran’s punishing economic sanctions were in place. He cast doubt on
US intentions, referring to Mike Pompeo’s boast last year that it had imposed
“the strongest sanctions in history” on Iran.
He said: “How can someone believe
them when the silent killing of a great nation, and pressure on the lives of 83
million Iranians, especially women and children, are welcomed by American
“The Iranian nation will never,
ever forget and forgive these crimes and these criminals.”
President Rouhani also dismissed the idea of a photo with President Trump, who has staged several photo opportunities with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un – including one apparently spontaneous handshake in the Korean peninsula’s Demilitarized Zone (DMZ).
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