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Yahoo! BooksJun 24, 2019
Mike Pompeo embarks on last-minute Middle East trip to build anti-Iran alliance
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he wants to build a global coalition against Iran during urgent consultations in the Middle East, following a week of crisis that saw the United States pull back from the brink of a military strike on Iran. Mr Pompeo spoke Sunday as he left Washington for Saudi Arabia, followed by the United Arab Emirates, Sunni Arab allies that are alarmed by Shia Iran's increasing assertiveness and are working to limit its influence in the region. His stops in Jeddah and Abu Dhabi were hastily arranged late last week as additions to a trip to India from where he will join Donald Trump, the US president, in Japan for the G20 summit and South Korea. But they were not announced until immediately before his departure in a sign of fast-moving and unpredictable developments. "We'll be talking with them about how to make sure that we are all strategically aligned, and how we can build out a global coalition, a coalition not only throughout the Gulf states, but in Asia and in Europe, that understands this challenge as it is prepared to push back against the world's largest state sponsor of terror," Mr Pompeo said about Iran. But even as Mr Pompeo delivered his tough talk, he echoed Mr Trump and Mike Pence, the vice president, in saying the US is prepared to negotiate with Iran, without preconditions, in a bid to ease tensions. At a glance | Key players in Tehran Those tensions have been mounting since Mr Trump last year withdrew the US from a global nuclear deal wit

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