Tag Archives: Mideast

Japan undecided on response to U.S. plan for Mideast maritime coalition -PM Abe

Japan undecided on response to U.S. plan for Mideast maritime coalition -PM AbeJapanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Sunday he had not yet decided on how to respond to an expected U.S. request to send its navy to join a military coalition to safeguard strategic waters off Iran and Yemen. “We’ve started to hear the United States’ thinking on this and we want to keep listening carefully,” he said on national television as votes were being counted for the upper house election. “At the same time, Japan also has friendly ties with Iran,” Abe added.



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Merchant ships urged to avoid using private armed teams in Mideast Gulf

Merchant ships urged to avoid using private armed teams in Mideast GulfShipping companies sailing through the Middle East Gulf are being urged to avoid having private armed security guards onboard as the risk of escalation in the region rises, industry associations say. Relations between Iran and the West have become increasingly strained after Britain seized an Iranian tanker in Gibraltar last week and London said its warship HMS Montrose had to fend off Iranian vessels seeking to block a British-owned tanker from passing through the Strait of Hormuz. The most recent incidents followed a spate of attacks on tankers since May around the Strait of Hormuz and the Gulf of Oman, which the United States has blamed on Iran and are denied by Tehran.



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AP Explains: Mideast tensions threaten key global oil route

AP Explains: Mideast tensions threaten key global oil routeThe brief standoff between British and Iranian naval vessels in the Strait of Hormuz on Thursday looks to renew concerns about the vulnerability of world energy supplies to tensions in the Persian Gulf region. The British navy says it thwarted an attempt by the Iranians to impede the passage of a British oil tanker, a day after Iran warned of repercussions after its own supertanker was seized by authorities in Gibraltar for allegedly trying to breach European sanctions on oil shipments to Syria. About a fifth of all oil traded around the world goes through the Strait of Hormuz, so any conflict could cause huge disruption to crude supplies for energy-hungry countries, particularly in Asia.



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In Mideast, Pompeo seeks a global coalition against Iran

In Mideast, Pompeo seeks a global coalition against IranSecretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday he wants to build a global coalition against Iran during urgent consultations in the Middle East, following a week of crisis that saw the United States pull back from the brink of a military strike on Iran. Pompeo spoke as he left Washington for Saudi Arabia, followed by the United Arab Emirates, Sunni Arab allies that are alarmed by Shiite Iran’s increasing assertiveness and are working to limit its influence in the region. “We’ll be talking with them about how to make sure that we are all strategically aligned, and how we can build out a global coalition, a coalition not only throughout the Gulf states, but in Asia and in Europe, that understands this challenge as it is prepared to push back against the world’s largest state sponsor of terror,” Pompeo said about Iran.



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Iran warns US attack would imperil interests across Mideast

Iran warns US attack would imperil interests across MideastTehran warned Washington Saturday that any attack would see its interests across the Middle East go up in flames after US President Donald Trump said he called off a strike at the 11th hour. The aborted military action was to have been in response to Iran’s downing of a US reconnaissance drone, which has seen tensions between the two countries soar after a series of attacks on commercial vessels the US has blamed on Iran. “Firing one bullet towards Iran will set fire to the interests of America and its allies” in the region, armed forces general staff spokesman Brigadier General Abolfazl Shekarchi told the Tasnim news agency.



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China warns US against opening Mideast 'Pandora's box'

China warns US against opening Mideast 'Pandora's box'China on Tuesday warned against opening a “Pandora’s box” in the Middle East after the United States announced the deployment of 1,000 additional troops to the region amid escalating tensions with Iran. Foreign Minister Wang Yi also urged Tehran to not abandon the nuclear agreement “so easily” after Iran said it would exceed its uranium stockpile limit if world powers fail to fulfil their commitments under the agreement in 10 days. The United States ratcheted up pressure on Iran Monday, announcing the deployment of additional troops to the Middle East and producing new photographs it said showed Tehran was behind an attack on a tanker ship in the Gulf of Oman last week.



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Mideast anger over Trump's Golan vow 'breaking international law'

Mideast anger over Trump's Golan vow 'breaking international law'Syria, its allies, and fellow states in the region Friday condemned US President Donald Trump’s pledge to recognise Israel’s annexation of the Golan Heights slamming the move as a violation of international law. Trump said Thursday it was time for Washington to recognise Israel’s sovereignty over the strategic territory, which it seized from Syria in the Six-Day War of 1967 and annexed in a move never recognised internationally. Any such move would break with UN Security Council resolutions and with more than half a century of US foreign policy, which treated the Golan as occupied territory whose future would be negotiated in talks with Syria on a comprehensive peace.



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Kuwait says U.S. Mideast peace plan should weigh regional considerations

Kuwait says U.S. Mideast peace plan should weigh regional considerationsU.S. President Donald Trump’s special adviser Jared Kushner visited several Gulf Arab states last month – but not Kuwait – to seek support from Arab leaders on the economic portion of the proposal that Trump is expected to unveil in the coming months. Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, has given a broad outline of the plan, saying it would address final-status issues of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, including establishing borders. “We hope the plan will take into account the situation in the region and all the relevant parties,” Sheikh Sabah Khaled al-Sabah told a joint news conference with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.



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Top US diplomat assails Obama in Mideast policy speech

Top US diplomat assails Obama in Mideast policy speechCAIRO (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivered a scathing rebuke of the Obama administration's Mideast policies on Thursday, accusing the former president of "misguided" thinking that diminished America's role in the region while harming its longtime friends and emboldening Iran.



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US officials head to Mideast amid tension over Syria pullout

US officials head to Mideast amid tension over Syria pulloutWASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and national security adviser John Bolton are hoping their trips to the Middle East can help shore up support from America's partners amid increasing tensions in the region.



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