Drop Middle East Troop Plan; Stop Provoking Iran: Russia To US

New Delhi: Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov told the United States on Tuesday to drop what it called ‘provocative plans’ to deploy more troops to the Middle East and to stop actions that looked like a conscious attempt to provoke a war with Iran.

“Now 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. They (these actions) cannot be assessed as anything but a conscious course to provoke war,” Ryabkov was quoted saying by the Russian News Agencies.

Similarly, China has warned the US against opening a “Pandora’s box” in the Middle East and asked the US to not use “extreme pressure” to resolve issues with Iran.

“We call on all sides to remain rational and exercise restraint, and not take any escalatory actions that irritate regional tensions, and not open a Pandora’s box,” Chinese State Councillor Wang Yi said.

The statements come after the Pentagon’s announcement about the deployment of 1,000 soldiers in Iran, strengthen security in the region in face of what they called was a growing threat from Iran.

On the other hand, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday that Iran would not wage war against any nation.

Noteworthy, tensions have escalated between Washington and Tehran ever since last Thursday when two oil tankers were hit in attacks in the strategic Strait of Hormuz shipping lane in the Gulf of Oman, a month after similar attacks hit four such tankers in the same region.

The United States has blamed Iran for the attacks and released video and photographs in support of its accusations.

However, Iran has repeatedly denied involvement and called the accusations “baseless” and “alarming”.

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