This image released by the US Department of Defense on Monday, June 17, 2019, and taken from a US Navy helicopter, shows what the Navy says is the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy after removing an unexploded limpet mine from the M/T Kokuka Courageous. (Photo: AP)
WASHINGTON, June 18 (Xinhua) -- US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Tuesday that President Donald Trump does not want war with Iran, while stressing that US pressure campaign against Tehran would continue.
"President Trump does not want war, and we will continue to communicate that message while doing the things that are necessary to protect American interests in the region," Pompeo told reporters at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida after meeting with senior military officers.
Pompeo reiterated that US pressure campaign on Iran has been effective and would continue.
Trump, however, said in an interview with TIME on Monday that he might take military action to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, but was ambiguous about the prospect of using force to protect international energy supplies.
The tensions between Washington and Tehran have been rising due to the attack on two oil tankers last week in Gulf of Oman as well as Iran's threats of not complying with the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.
Pentagon announced on Monday the deployment about 1,000 additional troops to the Middle East for "for defensive purposes."
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Tuesday in a broadcast speech on state television that "Iran will not wage war against any nation," adding that US efforts to isolate Iran have been unsuccessful.
Despite the fact that the Trump administration has repeatedly claimed the United States does not seek conflict with Iran and the military deployment only serves as a deterrence, analysts still worry that unintended incidents and miscalculations between Washington and Tehran might ultimately trigger military conflicts.