Trump warns of Iran’s ‘official end’ if it ‘wants to fight’, Latest World News - The New Paper

Trump warns of Iran’s ‘official end’ if it ‘wants to fight’

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RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA US President Donald Trump issued a new threat to Iran, tweeting that a conflict would be the "official end" of the nation. This comes as Saudi Arabia warned it stood ready to respond with "all strength" and said it was up to Iran to avoid war.

The heightened rhetoric follows last week's attacks on Saudi oil assets and the firing of a rocket on Sunday into Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone that exploded near the US embassy.

"If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran. Never threaten the United States again," Mr Trump said in a tweet without elaborating.

A US State Department official said the rocket attack in Baghdad did not hit an American-inhabited facility and had no casualties nor any significant damage. No claims of responsibility had been made, but the US was taking the incident "very seriously".

"We have made clear over the past two weeks and again underscore that attacks on US personnel and facilities will not be tolerated and will be responded to in a decisive manner," the official said.

"We will hold Iran responsible if any such attacks are conducted by its proxy militia forces or elements of such forces, and will respond to Iran accordingly."

Saudi Arabia, which emphasised that it does not want a war, has accused Teheran of ordering last week's drone strikes on two oil pumping stations in the kingdom, claimed by Yemen's Iran-aligned Houthi group.

Days before that, four vessels, including two Saudi oil tankers, were sabotaged off the coast of the United Arab Emirates.

Iran has denied involvement in both incidents, which come as Washington and Iran spar over sanctions and the US military presence in the region, raising concerns about a potential conflict.

"The kingdom of Saudi Arabia does not want a war in the region nor does it seek that," Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir told a news conference.

"It will do what it can to prevent this war and at the same time it reaffirms that in the event the other side chooses war, the kingdom will respond with all force and determination, and it will defend itself and its interests." - REUTERS