Pompeo shifts rationale for Soleimani killing from ‘imminent’ threat to deterrence strategy

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Tue, 14 Jan 2020 - 09:27 GMT

Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo testifies before the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on Capitol Hill in Washington - REUTERS

Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo testifies before the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on Capitol Hill in Washington - REUTERS

WASHINGTON - 14 January 2020: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said that the assassination of Qassem Soleimani was part of a “bigger strategy” to deter Iran and other US rivals, including Russia and China, in what marked a significant departure from Washington’s original account.

“President Trump and those of us in his national security team are re-establishing deterrents – real deterrents – against the Islamic Republic,” Pompeo said in a speech at Stanford’s Hoover Institute on Monday.

Pompeo said that the US is now in the greatest position of strength regarding Iran ever because of the stringent sanctions that Trump re-imposed on the Islamic Republic following his withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal.

The importance of deterrence isn’t confined to Iran, Pompeo said. "In all cases, we must deter foes to defend freedom. That’s the whole point of President Trump’s work to make our military the strongest it’s ever been”.

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