Pompeo Makes Unscheduled Visit To Baghdad Amid Rising Tensions With Iran

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is seen during the Arctic Council Ministerial Meeting in Rovaniemi

Yet, he confirmed the U.S. is "fully prepared to respond to any attack, whether by proxy, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps or regular Iranian forces".

A leak from Britain's National Security Council last month suggested the government in London is planning a limited role for Huawei in its 5G network.

"The message that we've sent to the Iranians, I hope, puts us in a position where we can deter and the Iranians will think twice about attacking American interests", Pompeo said, noting that USA intelligence was "very specific" about "attacks that were imminent". He will also meet Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has, for the second time this week canceled his travel plans because of escalating tensions with Iran.

Kadhimi said the targeting of U.S. troops inside and outside of Iraq is always an option if the United States encroaches on Iraqi sovereignty. This was just three days after the US announced the dispatch of the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln and US Air Force bombers to the Persian Gulf region to threaten Iran. The chief topic in the talks was the United Kingdom government decision to allow Huawei limited access to 5G networks, although the Iran nuclear deal and planning for a post-Brexit free trade deal were also discussed. Her main concerns with China were the smooth return of Hong Kong to Chinese political control when tea-sucking, opium-dealing Britain's 99-year lease on the colony came to an end in 1997.

Pompeo and Abdel Mahdi had spoken by phone on Friday, but a readout provided by the PM's office did not mention Iran.

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He travelled to Baghdad and Arbil in January, also unannounced, to reassure Washington's Kurdish allies after the United States announced it would withdraw its troops from Syria.

President Hassan Rouhani paid an official visit to Iraq in March, where he denounced pressure from the "aggressor" United States, which deposed Iran's arch-enemy Saddam Hussein in a 2003 invasion.

Mr Ellwood added: 'The words he said, and in arguing, going back to what Margaret Thatcher would have decided, I would agree and I would hope it is exactly what we are going to do'.

The United States on May 8 tightened the screws further on Iran with sanctions on its metal industry on the day Tehran said it was suspending some of its commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

The U.S. diplomat also had tough words for supporters of Venezuelan President Maduro, following a question about British opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn's criticism of outside intervention in the country.

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