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Britain warns of Iran-U.S. conflict, EU to meet Pompeo

FILE PHOTO: European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini takes part in a news conference atfer a Turkey-EU Association Council in Brussels, Belgium, March 15, 2019. REUTERS/Francois Lenoir

Iran and the United States could trigger a conflict by accident in an already unstable Gulf region, Britain’s foreign minister said on Monday, urging a period of calm ahead of talks between the European Union and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

President Donald Trump is seeking to isolate Tehran by cutting off its oil exports after pulling out of a 2015 deal aimed at curbing Iran’s nuclear program. Trump has also sent U.S. warplanes and an aircraft carrier to the Gulf.

“We are very worried about a conflict, about the risk of a conflict ... of an escalation that is unintended,” Britain’s Jeremy Hunt told reporters as he arrived in Brussels for a meeting of EU foreign ministers.

Hunt, who was due later to meet Pompeo along with the foreign ministers of France and Germany and the EU’s diplomatic chief, also expressed concern about the risks of a nuclear arms race in the Middle East if Iran were to acquire such weapons.


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