Iran issues a stark warning to the United States threatening “all out war” if the U.S. issues retaliation in response to an attack on Saudi oil production over the weekend.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif made those remarks Thursday saying it still hopes to avoid military engagement, but it “won’t blink” to defend its territory.
Zarif continued by saying, “They’ve done whatever they [U.S.] could and they haven’t been able to bring us to our knees.”
The attack on Saudi oil production occurred Saturday and reportedly involved drone strikes, which wiped out 5% of the world’s daily oil production prompting prices to soar across the globe.
The foreign minister also mentioned sanctions targeting Tehran will have to be lifted before any negotiations with the United States could take place.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo landed in Saudi Arabia for on Wednesday calling the oil attack an “act of war” while slamming Iran for putting the global energy supply at risk.
The top American diplomat took to twitter Thursday regarding the attack saying, “The U.S. stands with Saudi Arabia and supports its right to defend itself. The Iranian regime’s threatening behavior will not be tolerated.”
This comes one day after Iran said there will be no dialogue with the United States just days before a United Nations meeting is scheduled to take place in New York bringing both leaders face to face.
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei made those remarks Tuesday saying, “There will be no talks with the U.S. at any level,” shutting down speculation he would meet with President Trump.
Khamenei continued by slamming the U.S. for its “maximum pressure” campaign targeting the Islamic Republic saying, “That’s why all Iranian officials, from the president and the foreign minister to all others have announced that we do not negotiate either bilaterally or multilaterally.”
His comments come after President Trump said the Islamic Republic is likely responsible for an attack on Saudi Arabian oil production facilities which happened over the weekend.
President Trump issued a stark warning on Sunday saying the U.S. is “locked and loaded” although he has repeatedly clarified he does not seek regime change or war with Iran.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo previously weighed in on the attack calling it “unprecedented” while dismissing allegations it was carried out by the Houthis.
Although the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels claimed responsibility for the attack, some experts think Iran could have launched the attack from its own soil.
Reports suggest the weapons used in the attack were Iranian, although the Islamic Republic has denied any involvement.
Tension between the U.S. and Iran has soared in the last year and a half following U.S. withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal.
Since then, the Iranian economy has struggled to survive American sanctions as the deal’s European signatories continue to try to salvage the accord.