Pompeo: Peace in Middle east not possible without 'confronting Iran'

Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoSondland brings impeachment inquiry to White House doorstep Overnight Defense — Presented by Boeing — Senate eyes sending stopgap spending bill back to House | Sondland delivers bombshell impeachment testimony | Pentagon deputy says he didn't try to block official's testimony Five bombshells from explosive Sondland testimony MORE said on Thursday that peace in the Middle East is impossible without "confronting Iran." 

"You can’t achieve peace and stability in the Middle East without confronting Iran," he said at a summit with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, according to a transcript from the State Department.  "It’s just not possible."

ADVERTISEMENT

He added that the regional power is a "malign influence" in Yemen, Syria and Iraq. 

"You can’t get peace in the Middle East without pushing back against Iran," he added. 

Pompeo was asked about Iran following a now-deleted tweet from Netanyahu's office that said he was meeting with Arab leaders to discuss "war with Iran.”

"What is important about this meeting, and it is not in secret, because there are many of those – is that this is an open meeting with representatives of leading Arab countries, that are sitting down together with Israel in order to advance the common interest of war with Iran,” the tweet, which came after Netanyahu met Oman's foreign minister, said.

The tweet is said to have been a mistranslation, however. The account later shared a similar tweet that instead mentioned "combatting Iran."

The leaders met at a U.S.-supported conference on Middle Eastern policy in Warsaw, Poland. 

President TrumpDonald John TrumpFive takeaways from the Democratic debate As Buttigieg rises, Biden is still the target Leading Democrats largely pull punches at debate MORE last year pulled out of the Obama-era nuclear deal with Iran and has reimposed sanctions, increasing tensions between Washington and Tehran.