Donald Trump, President of the United States has vowed that any attack by Iran against his country would be met with a response “1,000 times greater in magnitude.
Trump was reacting to a report by Politico, a US media report that Iran was planning to avenge the death of one its top Military General, Qassem Soleimani, that was killed by a US drone in January, this year.
The media report had quoted unnamed officials, saying that an alleged Iranian plot to assassinate the US ambassador to South Africa was planned before the presidential election in November.
“According to press reports, Iran may be planning an assassination, or another attack, against the United States in retaliation for the killing of terrorist leader Soleimani, which was carried out for his planning a future attack, murdering U.S. Troops, and the death & suffering caused over so many years.
“Any attack by Iran, in any form, against the United States will be met with an attack on Iran that will be 1,000 times greater in magnitude!” Trump tweeted on Monday.
Relations between Washington and Tehran have been tense since the Iranian revolution, and have spiralled since Trump unilaterally pulled out of a landmark international nuclear deal with Iran in May 2018.
In January, a US drone strike killed Soleimani in Baghdad, and Washington is pushing to extend an arms embargo on Iran that starts to progressively expire in October as well as reimposing UN sanctions on the Islamic republic.
Days after Soleimani’s death, Iran launched a ballistic missile salvo at a military base in Iraq that housed U.S. forces, with the US claiming that no major damages were caused to its soldiers.
Trump declined to retaliate and said, “Iran appears to be standing down, which is a good thing for all parties concerned and a very good thing for the world,” but announced fresh sanctions on the Iranian regime and warned it against further retaliatory moves.
The Iranian navy last week said it drove off American aircraft that flew close to an area where military exercises were underway near the Strait of Hormuz.
The military said three US aircraft were detected by Iran’s air force radars after they entered the country’s air defence identification zone.