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THE US has sent a stark warning to Iran, claiming military action could be used if sanctions against the country fail to curb Tehran from delivering weapons to hostile groups in the region.
By MARTINA BET
Addressing a press conference at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling in Washington, Brian Hook, the State Department special representative on Iran, said there is evidence of Tehran’s violation of UN resolutions against weapons proliferation. When asked about possible next steps the White House could take against Iran in its “maximum pressure” campaign against the country, Mr Hook said: “We have been very clear with the Iranian regime that we will not hesitate to use military force when our interests are threatened. “I think they understand that. I think they understand that very clearly.
“I think right now, while we have the military option on the table, our preference is to use all of the tools that are at our disposal diplomatically.”
Mr Hook spoke during the event which was held to display an array of weapons and military paraphernalia allegedly deployed by Tehran to militant groups in Iraq, Syria, Yemen and Afghanistan.
He added: “This is simply putting out in broad daylight Iran’s missiles and small arms and rockets and UAVs and drones.
The White House claimed the Iranian corporate logos on arms fragments is the proof the weapons came from Tehran.
Katie Wheelbarger, the principal deputy assistant secretary of defence for international security affairs, noted the Trump administration wants “there to be no doubt across the world that this is a priority for the United States and that it is in the international interest to address it”.
Mr Hook’s remarks come only a week after President Hassan Rouhani said all Muslim nations should unite to stand against Washington and Israel.
Speaking at the 32nd international conference on Islamic unity in Tehran on Saturday, President Rouhani insisted that in order to achieve victory over the US, Muslim countries should cooperate.