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EU: Iran should avoid irreversible steps

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — President of the European Council Charles Michel has held a telephone conversation with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

According to a European Council announcement, Michel has expressed condolences over the crash of the Ukrainian Airlines plane yesterday after landing in Tehran.

Michel has said that the EU stands ready to be in contact with all parties to reduce tensions in the region.

He has called for avoidance of all actions that would further escalate tensions, adding that the nuclear deal with Iran is a major benefit that was achieved after long negotiations.

Michel has stressed that Tehran should avoid irreversible steps and that the EU will continue to play an international role by cooperating with member states.

On the other hand, Iranian President Rouhani has said that the EU acts responsibly and plays a role in enabling stability in the region.

Tensions in the region already heightened between the US and Iran escalated to a high level after Iranian General Qasem Soleimani was killed in a US attack on Baghdad last Friday.

The attack comes after a series of accusations between the US and Iranian-backed forces that began with the killing of a US contractor at an Iraqi base late last month.

The US retaliated with air strikes on Iran-backed militia, which it said was responsible for carrying out the attack, killing dozens.

Then, last Tuesday, the US Embassy in Baghdad was attacked by a group of angry militias and demonstrators.

The US had accused Soleiman of attacks on the US embassy and base, claiming that if the airstrike in which he was killed had not been carried out, hundreds of other Americans would have lost their lives.

In response to the assassination of Soleiman, the commander of the Revolutionary Guard’s elite Quds force, Iran launched dozens of ballistic missiles at bases in Iraq yesterday where US troops are stationed.

Tensions between the US and Iran have often been exacerbated since US President Donald Trump in 2018 decided to unilaterally withdraw Washington from the world powers’ nuclear deal with Iran.

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