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Pompeo to Visit Brussels to Discuss Iran En Route to Russia
By Staff, Agencies
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is to visit Brussels on Monday to discuss "pressing matters" including Iran, a State Department official said Sunday.
As a result, the top US diplomat is scrapping a stop expected on Monday in Moscow.
But he will still head to the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi on Tuesday to meet President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, the official added just before Pompeo left Washington.
US President Donald Trump also has stepped up economic pressure on Iran, moving to cut off all its oil exports, to try to get Tehran to curb its nuclear and missile programs as well as end support for groups in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and Yemen.
Speaking to CNBC in an interview to be broadcast on Monday, Pompeo said the US deployments were in response to intelligence about alleged potential Iranian attacks and aimed both to deter them and to be able to respond if necessary.
“In the event that Iran decided to come after an American interest – whether that be in Iraq or Afghanistan or Yemen or any place in the Middle East – we are prepared to respond in an appropriate way,” he said, adding “Our aim is not war.”
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