Escalation of tension between the US and Iran undesirable | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 17, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, September 17, 2019

Escalation of tension between the US and Iran undesirable

US must show maximum restraint in its approach towards Iran

The narratives that have emerged from the United States in the aftermath of the recent attacks on Saudi Aramco, Saudi Arabia’s state petroleum and natural gas company, are alarming. While US President Donald Trump has said on Twitter that they are “locked and loaded” and awaiting confirmation of who had exactly attacked the Saudi Aramco, the Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has explicitly blamed Iran for carrying out the drone strikes, saying Iran “has now launched an unprecedented attack on the world’s energy supply”; this despite Yemen’s Houthi rebels officially claiming the attacks. Although Pompeo claimed that “there is no evidence the attacks came from Yemen,” he could not substantiate it with any evidence.

Tensions escalated between Iran and the US after the latter unilaterally and arbitrarily pulled out of the Iran Nuclear Deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), which the country had signed with the P5+1 countries after years of careful negotiations to limit Iran’s nuclear activities. Following the pull-out, the US adopted the “maximum pressure” strategy to force Iran’s hands to negotiate a new deal with the US by slapping crippling economic sanctions on the country. And the US pressure did not just end there. The US has blamed Iran for the attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman and was against the release of the Iranian oil tanker Grace 1 (renamed to Adrian Darya 1) that was seized by British Royal Marine commandos off Gibraltar on July 4.

The repeated escalation of tensions between the US and Iran is a matter of concern for the world community due to its potential ramifications for everyone. A conflict between the two can destabilise the Middle East and plunge the already disturbed region into chaos, with the effects echoing around the globe. The US should be more measured with its words and must substantiate any claims it makes against Iran with concrete evidence. Both sides must exercise restraint and work together to address the issues between them through peaceful and diplomatic means.   

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