UNITED STATES (VOP TODAY NEWS) — US President Donald Trump issued a fresh warning to Tehran on Sunday and said on Twitter that any war would be Iran’s “official end,” while Saudi Arabia made it clear it was ready to respond with full force and to avoid a war.
The escalation comes after Saudi oil assets were attacked last week and a rocket fired on Sunday on the heavily fortified Green Zone in Baghdad, which houses government buildings and foreign embassies.
“If Iran wants to fight it will be the official end of Iran,” Trump said on Twitter without giving details. Never threaten the United States again.”
Riyadh accused Tehran of issuing orders to launch attacks on two oil pumping stations in Saudi Arabia, which the Houthi movement allied to Iran claimed responsibility for. The attacks came two days after four ships, including two Saudi oil tankers, were sabotaged off the coast of the United Arab Emirates.
The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Fifth Fleet said on Sunday that the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) had launched “intensive security patrols” in the Gulf waters on Saturday.
Iran denies being behind the attacks, which come as tensions between Washington and Tehran escalate over sanctions and a US military presence in the region, raising fears of a war between the United States and Iran.
“Saudi Arabia does not want a war in the region and does not seek it,” Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir told a news conference. “It will do everything it can to prevent While at the same time asserting that if the other side chooses war, the Kingdom will respond with all force and resolve and defend itself and its interests.”
King Salman called on Gulf and Arab leaders to hold two emergency summits in Mecca on May 30 to discuss the ramifications of the attacks.
“The current delicate circumstances require a unified Gulf and Arab position in light of the challenges and dangers surrounding it,” the UAE foreign ministry said in a statement.
The UAE has not been responsible for sabotaging the tankers of any party pending the investigation. No one claimed responsibility for the operations, but US government sources said last week that US officials believed Iran had encouraged al-Houthi or Iraqi-based Shi’ite factions to carry them out.
The Houthis claimed responsibility for the attack by aircraft marching on two pumping stations in Saudi Arabia. Riyadh said it did not disrupt production or exports. The Houthis have been fighting a Saudi-led military alliance in Yemen since 2015.
A Saudi military source said on Sunday that the targeting of Saudi Aramco facilities last week was the start of military operations against 300 vital and military targets.
The agency, which is run by the Houthis, quoted the source as saying the targets include military installations and facilities in the UAE and Saudi Arabia as well as bases in Yemen.
The head of the Supreme Revolutionary Committee of the Houthis, Muhammad Ali al-Houthi, in a tweet on Twitter condemned Riyadh’s call for the two summits as “summits that only master wars and destruction.”
A report by Norwegian insurance companies seen by Reuters said it was “highly likely” that the Iranian Revolutionary Guards had facilitated the attack on ships near the emirate of Fujairah in the United Arab Emirates.
In Baghdad, the Iraqi army said a Katyusha rocket landed in the heart of the Green Zone without causing any casualties and later said it had fallen near the memorial of the unknown soldier.
Captain Bill Urban, spokesman for the US Central Command, said the command had learned of an explosion in the Green Zone outside the compound of the US embassy and that there were no casualties from the Americans or coalition forces.
The Green Zone in Baghdad was a repeated target of mortars during the US occupation of Iraq, which ended in 2011.
Since then, the Green Zone has been bombed from time to time. The latest attack occurred in September when three mortar rounds landed inside the Green Zone but caused no casualties
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Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif ruled out the possibility of war in the region, saying Tehran did not want the conflict and that no country could “imagine it could confront Iran,” a position echoed by Iranian Revolutionary Guards commander Major General Hussein Salami on Sunday.
“We do not seek war, but we do not fear it either,” the semi-official Tasnim news agency quoted him as saying.
Washington has tightened economic sanctions on Iran to try to stop its oil exports altogether and boosted the military presence in the Gulf in response to what it called Iranian threats to troops and US interests.
“We want peace, stability and security in the region, but we will not,” Al-Jubeir told a news conference. We stand with our hands folded in the shadow of Iran’s continuous attack … the ball in Iran’s court and on Iran to determine what will be the fate.”
He added that the crew of an Iranian tanker, which was flown to Saudi Arabia this month after asking for help due to engine problems, is still in the Kingdom and receives the required care. The crew consists of 24 Iranians and two Bangladeshis.
In an indication of rising tensions in the region, ExxonMobil has evacuated its foreign staff from an oilfield in Iraq.
Bahrain also warned its citizens on Saturday to travel to Iraq and Iran and asked those already there to return immediately.
The US Federal Aviation Administration issued a warning to commercial airlines in the United States advising caution when flying over Gulf waters and Gulf of Oman.
This article is written and prepared by our foreign editors writing for VOP from different countries around the world – edited and published by VOP staff in our newsroom.
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