Pompeo after Soleimani strike: ‘The Europeans haven’t been as helpful as I wish that they could be’

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Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the United States’s European allies “haven’t been as helpful as I wish that they could be” following the U.S. strike in Iraq on Thursday that killed Iran’s top military commander, Gen. Qassem Soleimani.

“Frankly, the Europeans haven’t been as helpful as I wish that they could be,” Pompeo told Fox News’s Sean Hannity during an interview Friday night.

“The Brits, the French, the Germans all need to understand that what we did, what the Americans did, saved lives in Europe as well,” he added.

The top U.S. diplomat reiterated in the interview his assertion from earlier Friday that Soleimani, a powerful Iranian military figure and leader of the country’s elite Quds Force, was planning an “imminent” attack before he was killed.

“There was an attack that was imminent that could have killed dozens or hundreds of Americans,” he said, referencing Trump’s remarks on the topic earlier in the day.

Pompeo said Soleimani was laying the groundwork for “what they were referring to as the ‘big attack,'” saying it was “aiming to take down significant amounts of Americans” and would have “undoubtedly killed locals too.” 

“This was a good thing for the entire world, and we’re urging everyone in the world to get behind what the United States is trying to do, to get the Islamic Republic of Iran to simply behave like a normal nation,” Pompeo said.

A number of other global leaders voiced concern this week following the U.S. strike that killed Soleimani and others as their convoy left Baghdad International Airport.

“Peace in the Middle East and the Gulf region should be preserved,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said. “We urge all parties concerned, especially the United States, to maintain calm and restraint and avoid further escalation of tensions.”

In a statement, the Russian Foreign Ministry said “such actions don’t help resolve complicated problems in the Middle East, but instead lead to a new round of escalating tensions.”

German government spokeswoman Ulrike Demme described the strike as “a reaction to a whole series of military provocations for which Iran bears responsibility” but urged caution moving forward.

“We are at a dangerous escalation point and what matters now is contributing with prudence and restraint to de-escalation,” she added.  

Tags Iran Mike Pompeo Mike Pompeo Qasem Soleimani Sean Hannity U.S. U.S.-Iran relations

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