New US Secy of State Mike Pompeo begins his hawkish stint by targeting Iran
Mike Pompeo, who took over as the US secretary of state on April 26 after a close voting, got into the act straightaway by visiting West Asia in his first foreign trip to reach an international consensus to punish Iran over its nuclear ambitions.
Pompeo, known for his hawkish views, also asked America's old ally Saudi Arabia and its neighbours to sort out differences with Qatar as the US feels Tehran is taking opportunity of that to strengthen its regional clout and assert influence in disturbed countries like Syria and Yemen.
The top American diplomat was set to meet Saudi Arabia's King Salman who along with countries like Bahrain and the UAE has locked horns with Qatar in recent past. Pompeo reached Saudi capital Riyadh a day after Houthi rebels in Yemen, backed by Iran, fired missiles at the Saudi city of Jizan, killing one person. The latest incidence has vindicated the USA's position about Iran growing into a major threat to the international community.
US President Donald Trump has repeatedly bashed the multilateral nuclear deal on Iran which was reached during the time of Barack Obama in 2015 and also threatened to resume American sanctions on the West Asian country if the "flaws" of the deal were not fixed soon. May 12 is the deadline after which Trump will decide on re-imposing the sanctions, a move that USA's European allies believe would worsen the Iran crisis.
French and German heads of state Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel visited the US last week and spoke with Trump about the Iran deal though none of them looked successful in convincing Trump in changing his mind over Iran.
Tehran has also counter threatened saying it would come up with expected and unexpected reactions if the US quit the deal and also said it could come out of the Non-Proliferation Treaty.
The US is also upset over the fact that Iran is supporting Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad's regime which the West attacked earlier this month with missile attacks after it allegedly conducted gas attack on its own people.
Trump also said that he would not allow Iran to restart its nuclear programme and if they did it, they would face problems than those they have ever faced.