Donald Trump reportedly initially gave approval for the military to launch strikes on Iran in retaliation for Tehran shooting down a US drone.
US officials were expecting strikes on a few under the radar and missile sites. Further, the president’s top national security officials and congressional leaders gathered at the White House, from a local newspaper.
It was not clear if strikes would go ahead at a later date. Both the White House and Pentagon have not commented on the reports.
On Friday, reports came out that Trump had passed a message to Tehran via Oman warning an attack on Iran was imminent.
“In his message, Donald Trump said he was against any war with Iran and wanted to talk to Tehran about various issues,” an anonymous Iranian official told a news agency. “He gave a short period of time to get our response but Iran’s immediate response was that it is up to Supreme Leader Khamenei to decide about this issue.”
A second Iranian official said: “We made it clear that the leader is against any talks, but the message will be conveyed to him to make a decision”. However, we told the Omani official that any attack against Iran will have regional and international consequences.”
While the U.S Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said he worried the administration “may bumble into a war”. Further, he continues the US President must be “Robust and Open to debate”
U.S and The Middle east
Additionally, Adam Schiff, the chairman of the House intelligence committee, said: “The president certainly listened to what we had to say.”
It reported the US believed the system was behind the US drone attack. Although, Tehran said it had used its “3rd Khordad” air defence system. Its the Iranian equivalent of the Russian Buk system that took down Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over Ukraine in 2014.
Trump had earlier appeared avid to calm tensions following the shooting early on Thursday of the US Global Hawk drone. Further, Trump said, the blame might be on a “loose and stupid” Iranian officer acting without authorisation from Tehran. “We didn’t have a man or woman in the drone. It would have made a big, big difference,” Trump said. When asked how the US would respond, he replied: “You’ll find out.”
The shooting on Thursday of the unarmed aircraft was the latest of a series of incidents that have raised tensions. The Gulf region is a critical stronghold for global oil supply. Hence, a total of six oil tankers were hit in two separate attacks.
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