Published On: Fri, May 24th, 2019

Iran CRISIS: Tehran CONDEMNS US as tensions soar with Washington – ‘END OF TRUMP!’ | World | News

Iran’s foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif raged at the social media post during an official visit to Islamabad where, initially, he was called upon to ease escalating tensions between the US and Iran. Mr Zarif said: “Iran will see the end of Trump, but he will never see the end of Iran.” He was also reported to have condemned the Trump administration for denouncing Iran’s paramilitary Revolutionary Guard force as a terrorist organisation last month.

Fars news agency quoted Mr Zarif, who said that though President Trump “accused the Iranian nation several times with this title terrorist, he is the one that deserves it”.

The shock exchange comes as President Trump is set to deploy 1,500 US troops to the Middle East in the face of surging tensions with Iran.

Speaking to reporters on the White House lawn, Mr Trump said: “We want to have protection in the Middle East. We’re going to be sending a relatively small number of troops, mostly protective. Some very talented people are going to the Middle East right now. And we’ll see what happens.”

Congress was notified a day earlier about the proposals to boost the US presence in the Middle East.

The forces are set to be deployed in the next few weeks “with their primary responsibilities and activities being defensive in nature”, according to a copy of the notification.

The troops will be involved in protecting US forces already based in the region and ensuring freedom of navigation, the notification said, adding that officials said the Pentagon had drawn up plans that could have sent up to 10,000 troops to the Middle East.

Acting defence secretary Patrick Shanahan later insisted a figure had not been settled on.

Washington began increasing its presence in the region this month in response to perceived threats from Iran, including sending an aircraft carrier strike group, four bomber aircraft and fighter jets.

The US has tens of thousands of troops in the Middle East, including at a major Navy base in Bahrain and an Air Force base and operations centre in Qatar.

Tensions between Tehran and Washington have escalated as Mr Trump has toughened sanctions with the goal of pressuring Iran to make concessions beyond the terms of its 2015 nuclear deal.

Mr Trump warned on Monday that Iran would be met with “great force” if it attacked US interests in the Middle East.

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