By staff and agency

Russia urges U.S. to drop Middle East troop plan and stop provoking Iran

June 18, 2019

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov urged the U.S. on Tuesday to drop “provocative” plans to deploy more troops to the Middle East and to cease actions that looked like a conscious attempt to provoke war with Iran.

According to Reuters, he told reporters that Moscow had repeatedly warned Washington and its regional allies about the “unthinking and reckless pumping up of tensions in an explosive region.”

“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 cited as saying.

If Washington did not want war it had to show it, he said.

“If that’s really how it is then the U.S. should step back from reinforcing its military presence,” said Ryabkov.

Pentagon announced on Monday that the U.S. will send 1,000 additional forces and more military resources to the Middle East amid tensions with Iran.

President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday that Iran would not wage war against any nation and the Kremlin called for restraint from all sides.

NA/PA

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