Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has blamed Washington for the ongoing row between Iran and UK, saying the US is pulling the strings in an effort to step up pressure on Iran.
When US President Donald Trump called off an airstrike against Iran after the downing of a US drone, the war hawks in Washington turned to the UK, apparently seeking to “drag it into a quagmire” and further escalate tensions between the US, its allies, and Iran, Zarif tweeted.
Iran’s ambassador to London warned on Sunday that certain forces within the UK establishment want the tensions to escalate even further, “well beyond the issue of ships.”
“Only prudence and foresight can thwart such ploys,” the foreign minister said. His words come amid an ongoing row between Iran and the UK that started when a tanker, carrying Iranian oil, was seized in the Strait of Gibraltar on July 4.
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) July 21, 2019
While the Gibraltar authorities said they suspected the tanker of violating EU sanctions against Syria, Iran denied the accusations and called the justification “laughable.” It also denounced the move as “piracy” and accused the UK authorities of acting on behalf of the US.
Tensions between the two nations escalated further when the Iranian Revolutionary Guard (IRGC) detained a British-flagged ship passing through the Strait of Hormuz, accusing it of not responding to a distress signal from an Iranian fishing boat and later reportedly failing to respond to several warnings from the IRGC.
The two sides continue to trade barbs. British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt blasted the seizure of the British-flagged tanker as “unacceptable” and promised a “robust” response. Iran’s ambassador to London warned on Sunday that certain forces within the UK establishment want the tensions to escalate even further, “well beyond the issue of ships.”
RT with additional input by GVS News Desk