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Frustrated European allies warn Pompeo against US-Iran escalation

European foreign ministers did little to hide their distress that Secretary of State Pompeo abruptly decided to consult them on rising Iran tensions, which they had warned would be a consequence of quitting the nuclear deal.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (L) arrives at the EU headquarters in Brussels on May 13, 2019. - The US Secretary of State arrived in Brussels on May 13 to discuss the Iran nuclear deal, as Britain issued a stark warning about the risk of conflict erupting "by accident" in the Gulf. (Photo by JOHN THYS / AFP)        (Photo credit should read JOHN THYS/AFP/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON — While Secretary of State Mike Pompeo may have been hoping that a hastily arranged stop in Brussels today would allow for photos and headlines showing American and European unity and joint resolve in the face of rising tensions with Iran, European allies did not seem interested in playing along.

“We are very worried about the risk of a conflict happening by accident, with an escalation that is unintended really on either side,” British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said as he arrived at a meeting in Brussels with his French and German counterparts and the EU foreign policy chief today.

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