Iran calls for diplomacy as US mulls response to deadly attack

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(Bloomberg) — Iran urged the United States to use diplomacy to ease tensions in the Middle East, as Tehran prepares for a military response to a deadly attack on a U.S. base this weekend.

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The Islamic Republic’s foreign minister said “active” diplomacy was underway to find a political solution to the war in Gaza and its regional fallout, without elaborating.

“The White House knows very well” that the way to end the war “and the current crisis in the region is political,” Hossein Amirabdollahian said in a message on X.

The comments come as the United States considers how to respond to a deadly attack on a base in Jordan that killed three American soldiers and injured dozens. President Joe Biden blamed Tehran-backed militias in neighboring Syria and Iraq and said he would respond “at the time and manner of our choosing.”

Iran has denied any involvement in the strike, the first to kill Americans since the outbreak of war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza in October.

Many Republicans, including former President Donald Trump, said the attack showed Biden had been too soft on Iran.

Deadly attack near Syria refocuses attention on US bases in the Middle East

The United States and Iran do not have formal diplomatic relations but have since exchanged messages on the crisis, sometimes through the Swiss embassy in Tehran. Both parties claim they want to defuse the situation while accusing the other of making it worse. The United States says Iran’s support for regional militias is fueling tensions, while Tehran says Washington must pressure Israel to end its military offensive in Gaza.

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