Iran says it won’t wage war, Russia tells U.S. to stop stoking tensions

Babak Dehghanpisheh, Sylvia Westall – Reuters Jan 18, 2019

President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday Iran would not wage war against any nation, while Russia told the United States it should drop what it called provocative plans to deploy more troops to the Middle East.

Fears of a confrontation between Iran and the United States have mounted since Washington blamed its long-time foe for Thursday’s attacks on two oil tankers near the strategic Strait of Hormuz shipping lane.

Relations had already deteriorated following President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from an international pact under which Iran agreed curbs on its nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief.

Since exiting that accord in May last year Trump has restored and extended U.S. sanctions, forcing countries around the world to boycott Iranian oil or face sanctions of their own.

Tehran, which has denied involvement the tanker attacks last week and in May, has urged other signatories to take action to save the nuclear pact or see Iran turn its back on the deal.

On Monday Iran warned it would soon breach limits on how much enriched uranium it can stockpile under a 2015 nuclear deal, which had sought to limit its nuclear capabilities.

Exceeding the uranium cap at the heart of the accord could prompt a diplomatic crisis, forcing the other signatories, which include China, Russia and European powers, to confront Iran.

The White House National Security Council condemned the development as “nuclear blackmail.”

The growing standoff drew calls for restraint from Russia and China, both signatories of the nuclear accord.

China’s top diplomat warned that the world should not open a “Pandora’s Box” in the Middle East, as he denounced U.S. pressure on Iran and called on it not to drop out of the landmark nuclear deal.

Russia told the United States to cease actions that looked like a conscious attempt to provoke war with Iran, and urged restraint on all sides.

“What we see are unending and sustained U.S. attempts to crank up political, psychological, economic and yes military pressure on Iran in quite a provocative way,” Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov was cited as saying by Russian news agencies.

“They (these actions) cannot be assessed as anything but a conscious course to provoke war,” he said.

The USS Abraham Lincoln is currently leading a carrier battle group sailing the Arabian Sea. Click to enlarge

IRAN DEFIANT

Acting U.S. Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan on Monday announced the deployment of about 1,000 more troops to the Middle East for what he said were defensive purposes, citing concerns about a threat from Iran.

The new U.S. deployment is in addition to a 1,500-troop increase announced last month in response to tanker attacks in May. Washington previously tightened sanctions, ordering all countries and companies to halt imports of Iranian oil or be banished from the global financial system.

Rouhani said Iran did not seek conflict and dismissed U.S. efforts to isolate Iran and suggested the Trump administration was inexperienced in international affairs.

“Iran will not wage war against any nation,” Rouhani said in a speech broadcast live on state TV. “Despite all of the Americans’ efforts in the region and their desire to cut off our ties with all of the world and their desire to keep Iran secluded, they have been unsuccessful.”

On Monday, Iranian officials made several assertive comments about security, including Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, who said Iran was responsible for Gulf security and urged U.S. forces to leave the region.

Heightened Iran-U.S. tensions have stoked fears of increased violence in countries where Iran and its Gulf Arab regional rivals are locked in a sometimes bloody struggle for influence.

Saudi air defenses intercepted two drones fired by Yemen’s Iran-aligned Houthi group, one of them targeting a residential area in the southern Saudi city of Abha, Saudi media said on Tuesday. The group’s Al Masirah TV said the Houthis had launched drone attacks on Abha airport.

Three rockets landed on a military base hosting U.S. forces north of Baghdad late on Monday, an Iraqi military statement said, without providing further details. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.

U.S. officials said last month there was an increased threat from Iran-backed militias against U.S. interests in Iraq, and the U.S. embassy in Baghdad evacuated hundreds of staff.

WARNINGS

The 2015 nuclear deal with Iran aimed to head off any pathway to an Iranian nuclear bomb.

The Trump administration says the deal, negotiated by his Democratic predecessor, failed to address Iran’s missile program and does not punish it for waging proxy wars in other Middle East countries.

Rouhani said on Monday the collapse of the deal would not be in the interests of the region or the world and Russia’s Ryabkov said Moscow had repeatedly warned Washington and its regional allies against the “unthinking and reckless pumping up of tensions in an explosive region.”

In Beijing, Chinese State Councillor Wang Yi told reporters the United States should not use “extreme pressure” to resolve issues with Iran. China, a close energy partner of Iran, was “very concerned” about the situation in the Gulf and with Iran, and urged all sides to ease tension.

Source

3 responses to “Iran says it won’t wage war, Russia tells U.S. to stop stoking tensions”

  1. Concerning the recent tanker tanker rescue mission by Iranian sailors:

    It looks to me like the Iranian sailor is unattaching a magnetic mooring device.

    see online videos “Footage US military claims shows Iranian patrol boat removing limpet mine from tanker”

    If the device was an explosive device the rescue boat would have been on the other side of the tanker the farthest away from the potential blast area and only one trained expert would be in the boat near it.

    Since the rescue boat is much smaller and lower than the tanker magnetic mooring device is how you hold the vessel near the bigger tanker in surging waters while trapped crewmembers are onloaded.

    Liars and war mongers Trump and Pompeo busted again.

  2. Let’s Call A Spade A Spade: Trump Needs A Diversion

    Isn’t it interesting, after many months of Trump’s blustering how great the economy was going, the first really bad economic figures for employment last month are released and what do you know? Mysterious holes no bigger than a persons head in the hull of ships bound for non-US territories, that is ships that don’t even belong to the USA but Japan, well I suppose the USA owns Japan, all things considered that is, and Trump wants to go challenge for a fight with Iran! What a gentleman Trump is! He is prepared to fight for Japanese honor with Iran! Hey any Japanese out there? How do you feel about a pompous six times bankruptee is going to fight for your honor? How proud do you feel to have such a successful expert in bankruptcy to fight for your reputation? Samurai honor being displayed by an American! Wow!

    And straight away who jumps on board and wants to support Trump in the US’s next pirate adventure? Why, of course non other Britain and France! Now it couldn’t be that the Conservatives are looking at a wipe out in the next general election that is making them all so eager to go pick a fight with Iran now could it? Nah! The British couldn’t be so shallow and duplicitous now could they? Nah! British honor, and all that now, wouldn’t let Brits be so shallow, of course not. And of course it couldn’t be that Macron too wouldn’t be trying to pick a fight with Iran all to take away attention from his now weekly battle with the Yellow Vests (or is it Jackets?) ….nah! French honor isn’t that shallow, is it? Nah!!

    So lets explore how Americans, Brits and French think here a bit. Three failing empires, with three failing leaders, with three failing economic countries, with three morons at the helm. Each of these countries have large Iranian populations in their countries. Now to you oh humble reader, I know what you are thinking. How can I know that? Well I know you are intelligent, for no one with an IQ less than a door-knob will not understand, you don’t pick a fight with a country that could/would initiate 5th column activities in your own country! But then again, the USA is led by a six time bankrupt orangutan, France is led by a dimwit mega-egoistical snob, and Britain, I guess under the present circumstances, you would call it, a vacuous brain.

    Hey anyone in the Whitehouse reading this? You know, CIA, NSA, how about British GCHQ? You wits or is it twits, I can never get that right, can you clear some things up for us? How do you attack a country with 82 million people, with advanced weaponry, and some 300,000 Iranians living in the USA, 100,000 living in the UK, and good 30 to 50,000 (it depends what you read) in France, all potentially that could start acting like a 5th column? Yeah, yeah, I know many Iranians overseas are not so sympathetic with their government back home, but do you think they are sympathetic to your Government if you kill their family members? So can one of you brainless morons(scratch that – that’s another time truthseeker!) i mean twats, sorry go that wrong again, twits in GCHQ or the CIA explain how this works?

    Also, can one of the genius twits in the CIA explain how the hole of the size of a football can be made into the side of ship, with a missile that didn’t even explode? Is that what this world has come to? The American people put a moron with the IQ of a sack of beans in the Whitehouse, and that sack of beans, expects the whole world to believe that a hole in the ship was made by an unexploded missile, which if true, should still be lodged in the lower levels of the ship’s hold, but apparently nobody can find it, and we all just take it for granted that an orangutan knows his bananas!

    I am looking for some GCHQ intelligence on this one! Otherwise, would anyone else like to chime in and provide some GCHQ like wisdom how this may all work?

  3. The same CIA men who whistleblew about small boys being smuggled into the white house for upyourbumma and michael to play with
    have blown the whistle again, the pervert obama may be in real trouble now
    https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2019/06/18/a-report-from-eric-zuesse-on-the-possibility-of-obama-facing-criminal-charges/