White House warns Iran over attacks on United States diplomatic missions in Iraq

Blanche Robertson
September 14, 2018

"America will respond swiftly and decisively in defense of American lives". Both the USA consulate in Basra and its embassy in Baghdad came under attack but the offices of political parties and militias backed by Iran were the principal target of the unrest in Basra while the Iranian consulate in the city was burnt to the ground. Ghasemi was responding to a statement by the White House on Tuesday, which criticized Iran for failing to prevent the violence, particularly the attacks on the U.S. diplomatic missions.

Among other things, the bill, whose text was seen by Reuters, would impose terrorism-related sanctions on Iranian-controlled militias and require the US Secretary of State to publish and maintain a list of armed groups receiving assistance from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, or IRGC.

Hours later, an unknown party fired rockets toward the Basra airport that houses the U.S. consulate, as well as toward the Green Zone in Baghdad, where the U.S. Embassy is located.

It did not cause any injuries or damage to the compound. Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Bahram Ghasemi blamed the unrest on United States support for "groups which have spread and promoted violence and extremism".

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In May, Trump withdrew the United States from a 2015 global nuclear accord with Iran and ordered the reimposition of U.S. sanctions suspended under the deal aimed at stalling Tehran's nuclear capabilities.

In May, Mr Trump withdrew the U.S. from a 2015 worldwide nuclear accord with Iran and ordered the reimposition of American sanctions suspended under the deal aimed at stalling Tehran's nuclear capabilities.

Iran's Sunni Muslim Gulf neighbours and its arch-enemy Israel have expressed concerns about Tehran's regional activities as a threat to their security.

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