June 17, 2024

War: Biden warns Iran over risks of retaliation against Israel

The United States, US, President, Joe Biden, has urged Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, to carefully consider any Israeli retaliatory strike against Iran and the consequences this might have.

In a telephone conversation between both leaders, Biden made it “very clear’’ to Netanyahu that he needed to “think carefully and strategically about risks of escalation”.

A senior US government official said this in Washington on Sunday evening.

The official was quoted by NAN as saying: “This is something that is constantly being discussed with the Israeli side and other allies, Biden also made it clear that the US would help Israel to defend itself.

“Israel had made it clear to the U.S. government in the past talks that it was not looking for a significant escalation with Iran.”

Iran’s direct attack on Israel at the weekend was fuelling fears of a conflagration in the Middle East.

The International efforts were already being made on Sunday to defuse the situation.

Biden and fellow leaders of the seven leading democratic industrialised countries (G7) discussed the crisis and condemned the large-scale attack in the strongest possible terms.

“We don’t want to see this escalate. We are not looking for a major war with Iran,’’ John Kirby, communications director of the U.S. government’s National Security Council, said.

He added that the U.S. president had been clear he was not seeking war with Iran.

The U.S. would continue to help Israel defend itself, Kirby said, but said that how Israel responded now would be up to them.

The U.S. has been Israel’s staunchest ally and biggest military supporter and has repeatedly reiterated its support as tensions escalated between Israel and Iran.

It was unclear on Sunday whether Israel would respond to Iran’s unprecedented direct attack the previous day, which, according to Israeli sources, involved some 300 missiles and drones.

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