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Tensions Spike Between Iran, US-led Coalition

Analysts Weigh in With Risks and Highlights

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20 May 2019
Tensions Spike Between Iran, US-led Coalition
The already high tensions between Iran and the US spiked Sunday evening when a rocket landed near the US Embassy compound in Baghdad, Iraq, causing no casualties but immediately rousing suspicion about a possible attempt by Iranian-backed militias in the city to send a message to Washington. Meanwhile, the government of Saudi Arabia issued a statement on Sunday that they are not seeking a war with Iran but that they are ready for one if Iran starts it. "The kingdom of Saudi Arabia does not want a war in the region nor does it seek that," Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir told a news conference. "We want peace and stability in the region but we will not sit on our hands in light of the continuing Iranian attack. The ball is in Iran's court and it is up to Iran to determine what its fate will be."

The statement, which was met by nearly identical statements by Iranian officials aimed at Saudi Arabia and the US, follow drone attacks on Saudi oil pipeline pumping stations last Tuesday which Riyadh has blamed on Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in neighbouring Yemen. Meanwhile, King Salman has invited Arab League heads of state to an emergency meeting in Mecca, scheduled for 30 May.

"The current critical circumstances entail a unified Arab and Gulf stance toward the besetting challenges and risks," the UAE foreign ministry said in a statement.

Here is a recently released podcast which gives some commentary on current events

Here is a video giving some further analysis of the situation


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