US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, on tour in the Gulf, assured that the United States favored a "Peaceful solution" with Iran, which he accuses of being at the origin of the recent attack on oil installations in Saudi Arabia.
Mr. Pompeo met on Thursday, September 19, the powerful crown prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed Ben Zayed Al-Nahyan. After their interview, he spoke to journalists about the existence of a 'Consensus' in the Gulf about Iran's responsibility in the attacks. "We are here to build a coalition aimed at achieving peace and a peaceful solution", said the head of US diplomacy, before flying to Washington, saying he hoped Iran would see things " in the same way ".
His Saudi counterpart, Adel al-Jubeir, reacted on Twitter by warning that any complacency towards Tehran would encourage Iran to "To commit other acts of terrorism and sabotage in our region". US President Donald Trump dispatched Pompeo to Jeddah (west-central Saudi Arabia) on Tuesday to discuss the response to the attacks on the Allied Kingdom.
Interviewed by US television CNN, Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said a US or Saudi strike would trigger "A total war", adding that his country did not want "Not war," but would not tremble if it was " to defend oneself ".
Attack "undeniably sponsored by Iran"
The recent tightening of the US position has raised fears of an armed escalation after September 14th strikes at the heart of the Saudi oil industry and led to a halving of the world's largest exporter of gold.
During Mr. Pompeo's visit to Saudi Arabia, both parties "Agreed that the Iranian regime must be held accountable for its aggressive, reckless and threatening behavior"said State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus. On the same day, Riyadh unveiled new results of its investigation and assured that the attack had been "Undeniably sponsored by Iran".
Supported by Tehran, Yemeni rebels claimed responsibility for the attack, also threatening to target the United Arab Emirates, a key member of the anti-Houthi coalition that has been working in Yemen since 2015 to support the internationally recognized government. But according to Ryad, the attack came " North ".
Houthists have already reached dozens of targets in Saudi Arabia. Their expanding arsenal revealed the kingdom's vulnerability despite its large military spending. But the double attack of Saturday is of another magnitude than the previous ones.
On Wednesday, US channel CBS News quoted an unnamed US official as saying that Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, would have himself approved the attack, provided it is conducted in such a way that it is possible to deny the Iranian involvement. The commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, Major General Hossein Salami, on Thursday reprimanded the United States of "Wrongly accuse of being behind any incident" In the region. The UN announced Thursday the arrival of experts in Riyadh to set up an international survey "At the invitation of the authorities" from the country.
According to New York Times, the US military has drawn up a list of Iranian targets, including the Abadan oil refinery, one of the largest in the world, or the island of Khark, the country's largest oil export facility . Other potential targets include missile launch sites and other assets of Revolutionary Guards, as well as southwestern bases where unusual activity suggests that they played a role in the strikes.
According to Cinzia Bianco, an analyst at the European Council on International Relations, "The dominant thought (in Saudi Arabia) wants the United States to target sensitive infrastructure in Iran to minimize or exclude any human costs ".
For Washington, the attack in Saudi Arabia involved cruise missiles from Iran, told Agence France-Presse (AFP) a US official speaking on condition of anonymity. He added that evidence will be presented at the UN General Assembly in New York next week. Zarif leaves Iran on Friday morning to participate in this assembly, according to Iranian diplomacy.
Iran's president, Hassan Rohani, is also expected to visit New York and could meet his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, who had discussed at the end of August a possible meeting between MM. Rohani and Trump. Thursday, the Elysee estimated that it remained however "Still a lot to check" before such a meeting. Trump, who has already imposed sanctions that paralyzed the Iranian economy, promised Wednesday to harden 'Substantial' these measures.
Military operation in Yemen
Tensions between Iran and the United States have been high since the Trump Administration unilaterally withdrew the 2015 Iran International Nuclear Agreement in May 2018, before reinstating increasing sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
On the ground in Yemen, the coalition announced that it had launched a military operation against the Houthis on Thursday, the first since the drone attacks, and thus destroyed four sites north of the port city of Hodeida (western Yemen). by rebels to assemble remotely operated boats and marine mines, according to a statement issued by the Saudi official SPA news agency.
Previously, she claimed to have foiled in the South of the Red Sea an attack on the boating boat, unmanned and remote controlled, according to her, by the Houthists.