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February 20, 2017 1:36 pm

Iranian FM Warns US, Israel, Saudi Arabia Against Getting Themselves Into ‘Serious Trouble’ Confronting Tehran Militarily

avatar by Barney Breen-Portnoy

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Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. Photo: Screenshot.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. Photo: Screenshot.

The US, Israel and Saudi Arabia should be “prudent enough not to get themselves into serious trouble” by confronting Iran militarily, the Islamic Republic’s top diplomat said in a BBC interview that aired on Monday.

“First of all, we’re not talking about the law of the jungle,” Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif told BBC’s Lyse Doucet. “We’re talking about the international law, and according to international law, those [military] options are a violation of international law.”

“I certainly hope that prudence will prevail because Iran is not an easy target,” Zarif asserted. “We’re not going to provoke anybody. We’re not going to instigate any hostility. We’ve never started hostility, and we’re not planning to do it. But we will defend ourselves.”

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“I do not believe that people looking at our history, people looking at our capabilities, will ever make the decision to engage in that misadventure,” the foreign minister also stated.

After meeting with new US Secretary of Defense James Mattis for the first time on Friday, Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said, “The three main problems we must handle are Iran, Iran and Iran. We must build a genuine and effective coalition to deal with the terrorism it [Iran] spreads around the world, the development of missiles it is engaged in and its nuclear arms race.”

At the start of this month, the Trump administration announced it was “officially putting Iran on notice” over recent hostile behavior, including a ballistic missile test.

Watch footage of Zarif’s comments below:

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