Iran’s plot exposed: Reason for ramped up rhetoric in face of US threats explained | UK | News (Reports)

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The two countries were at the brink of war back in January after US forces killed Iranian major general Qassem Soleimani during a missile strike in Iraq. General Soleimani’s convoy was struck by three US missiles.

Days after the attack, Tehran retaliated and launched a series of ballistic missiles at two Iraqi bases housing US troops.

Since then, tensions have ignited, sparking fears of a World War 3 outbreak.

But Kaleigh Thomas, Research Associate for the Middle East Security Program, believes Iran is purposely ramping up the aggression in the region.

Speaking to Express.co.uk, Ms Thomas said: “I think we are seeing a game of brinkmanship to an extent, less so trying to push the other to misstep into a larger conflict, but trying to force the other to make concessions.

“Currently, the Trump administration has maintained and, as much as you can increase maximum pressure, has continued to put pressure on Iran and to bring them to the negotiation table where Iran is in the weaker position.

“Iran similarly has increased its aggression in the region as it wants to build leverage in any future negotiations.

“And I think whether or not you have a second term Trump presidency or a new administration with Biden, the Iranians are looking to make sure that when they do go back to the negotiation table, they are coming to that table from a position of strength.

“And the way they achieve that is through this regional aggression which puts pressure on the US to reduce tensions, hopefully diplomatically.”

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Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Navy commander Rear Admiral Alireza Tangsiri said the weapons were a “nightmare” for Iran’s foes.

The forces are reportedly in possession of advanced, long-range missiles with newer weapons on the way.

Following this news, a spokesperson for the Pentagon called Iran the “greatest threat to peace and security”.

They said: “Iran claims to want good relations with its neighbours, yet it continues to threaten them with even greater levels of violence.

“Iran is the greatest threat to peace and security in the Middle East.”

Washington has been seeking an extension of a United Nations (UN) arms embargo against Tehran, under the Trump administration.

This is set to expire in October under the 2015 Iran nuclear deal which the US withdrew from.

The nuclear deal had restricted Iran’s nuclear weapons capability in return for sanctions relief.

However, Mr Trump abandoned the agreement in 2018 and has gone on to introduce a number of sanctions on Iranian oil exports, which have crippled the economy.

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