Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif is warning that any U.S. or Saudi military strike on Iran will result in "all-out war."
Zarif made the comment in an interview published by CNN Thursday. It comes after U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called an attack on Saudi oil installations an "act of war."
The U.S. accuses Iran of being behind the attack. Iran denies that.
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Yemen's Iranian-backed Houthi rebels have claimed the attack, saying it is over the yearslong Saudi-led war there that's killed tens of thousands of people. However, experts told The Associated Press the cruise missiles used in the assault did not have the range to have been launched from Yemen and reach their targets.
Trump said Wednesday that he thinks the Iranian president and foreign minister should be granted U.S. visas to attend next week’s United Nations General Assembly.
“If it was up to me, I’d let them come,” Trump said on a tarmac in Los Angeles. “I would certainly not want to keep people out if they want to come.”
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The administration is required to issue the visas under the U.N. agreement with the United States, the host country of the organization. The State Department, which issues visas, does not comment on individual cases.
U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres told reporters Wednesday that it has been in contact with the U.S. in order to solve all delegations’ outstanding visa problems.
Tension between the U.S. and Iran has escalated with the weekend attack on oil installations in Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia alleged Wednesday that the attack by drones and cruise missiles on the heart of the kingdom’s oil industry was “unquestionably sponsored by Iran,” but did not directly accuse Tehran of launching the assault. Iran, which has denied being involved, said it will retaliate “immediately” if it is targeted in response.
Iran’s state-run news agency IRNA said earlier that Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and his foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, may not attend the general assembly in New York because the U.S. had not yet issued them visas. IRNA said Zarif was to travel there Friday and Rouhani was to follow Monday.
The U.N. has been floated as a possible place for a meeting between Trump and Rouhani, but U.S. officials and Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei have said direct talks are not planned.