Published: Mon, June 24, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Iran Says US Cyberattacks Aimed to 'Cripple' Iranian Missiles Failed

Iran Says US Cyberattacks Aimed to 'Cripple' Iranian Missiles Failed

He warned that Iran should not misinterpret US President Donald Trump's decision not to retaliate over the shooting down of an American drone last week as weakness.

Both the U.S. and Iran say they want to avoid going to war, but tensions have spiked after Tehran shot down an American drone and a series of attacks on tankers in sensitive Gulf waters raised fears of an unintended slide towards conflict.

In an interview with NBC aired on June 23, Trump reiterated that he doesn't want war with Iran, but if it comes, "it'll be obliteration like you've never seen before".

On a day trip scheduled after Iran shot down a USA drone, Pompeo flew into the Red Sea city of Jeddah and met with King Salman at his palace.

"We will continue to make sure it's understood that this effort that we've engaged in - to deny Iran the resources to foment terror, to build out their nuclear weapons system, to build out their missile programme - we are going to deny them the resources they need to do that", Mr Pompeo told reporters at Andrews Air Force Base.

Those tensions have been mounting since the Unities States previous year withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers and reimposed economic sanctions on Iran.

Trump, who spent Saturday huddling with his advisers, said he was ready to reach out to Iran if the country agreed to renounce nuclear weapons. "Their economy is, is absolutely broken". But on Thursday, according to U.S. news accounts, Trump also approved U.S. Cyber Command attacks on an Iranian intelligence group's computer systems used to control missile and rocket launches.

"Neither Iran nor any other hostile actor should mistake United States prudence and discretion for weakness". A new set of USA sanctions on Iran are expected to be announced Monday.

Trump has indicated that he would also be prepared to seek a deal to bolster Iran's flagging economy, an apparent move to defuse tensions.

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Another source of regional tension is the more than four-year-old Saudi-UAE-led war in Yemen that has pushed millions towards the brink of starvation.

Netanyahu has repeatedly accused Iran of seeking to develop nuclear weapons - a charge Tehran denies.

Meanwhile, the Riyadh-led military coalition in Yemen said Iran-aligned Houthi rebels had attacked a civilian airport in southern Saudi Arabia, killing one civilian and wounding seven others.

On Sunday US national security adviser John Bolton cautioned Iran against misinterpreting the last-minute cancellation.

No one has granted Iran a "hunting license in the Middle East", he said. Bolton said Iran should not "mistake U.S. prudence and discretion for weakness" after Trump called off the military strike.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov told reporters on June 24 that the threat of more USA sanctions "is a reflection of the deliberate and purposeful escalation policy" while adding that the measures were "totally counterproductive and unsafe".

This included reiterating the UK's assessment that Iran nearly certainly bears responsibility for recent attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman, which Iran denies.

The United Kingdom, France, Germany and the European Union are signatories to the 2015 deal and Tehran wants the Europeans to shield Iran from the Trump administration's sanctions through a trade mechanism.

It was a week of topsy-turvy pronouncements on United States policy toward Iran that careened between the bellicose, the conciliatory and back again after Iran shot down an American military drone and boasted it would not bow to Washington's pressure.

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