Jeremy Corbyn condemns ‘US assassination’ of top Iranian general calling it a ‘dangerous escalation’

Jeremy Corbyn accused the United States of carrying out an ‘assassination’ of a top Iranian general today as MPs vying to replace him as Labour leader took the opportunity to tear into Donald Trump.

Mr Corbyn accused the US president of carrying out ‘an extremely serious and dangerous escalation of conflict’ in a region beset with violence after the rocket strike which took out Revolutionary Guard General Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad.

At the same time a host of his backbenchers also spoke out about the deadly attack, ahead of a leadership battle expected to officially start next week.

Mr Corbyn announced he would step down after Labour’s disastrous election defeat in December and some of those seen as leading contenders to replace him or become deputy leader were noticeably active on social media this morning after news of the attack broke.

Jess Philips attacked Mr Trump’s ‘reckless foreign policy’, while Clive Lewis condemned the president’s ‘cowboy action’.

In a statement today, Mr Corbyn said: ‘The US assassination of Iranian general Qasem Soleimani is an extremely serious and dangerous escalation of conflict in the Middle East with global significance. 

Mr Corbyn accused the US president of carrying out ‘an extremely serious and dangerous escalation of conflict’ in a region beset with violence

Jess Philips attacked Mr Trump's 'reckless foreign policy', while Clive Lewis condemned the president's 'cowboy action'

Jess Philips attacked Mr Trump's 'reckless foreign policy', while Clive Lewis condemned the president's 'cowboy action'

Jess Philips attacked Mr Trump’s ‘reckless foreign policy’, while Clive Lewis condemned the president’s ‘cowboy action’

Qassem Soleimani

Qassem Soleimani

Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis

Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis

The death of Soleimani (left), a figure deeply ingrained in the Iranian regime who many had assumed would be the country’s next leader, brings Iran and America to the brink of all-out war. Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis had been instrumental in leading attacks on the US embassy (pictured right, outside the building)

‘The UK government should urge restraint on the part of both Iran and the US, and stand up to the belligerent actions and rhetoric coming from the United States.

‘All countries in the region and beyond should seek to ratchet down the tensions to avoid deepening conflict, which can only bring further misery to the region, 17 years on from the disastrous invasion of Iraq.’

Mr Corbyn has been criticised in the past for appearing on Press TV, the Tehran-backed television channel later banned from broadcasting in the UK, while a backbench MP.

Ms Philips, who is being tipped to run to replace Mr Corbyn as party leader, said: ‘Reckless foreign policy does not show strength. It’s not a game.  

‘The consequences of the escalating tensions between the US and Iran are not to be underestimated, not just once again on the civilians in the region but on the whole world.’

Fellow Labour leadership hopefuls also weighed in, with Wigan’s Lisa Nandy adding: ‘This is a very dangerous moment. 17 years after the catastrophic decision to go to war in Iraq violence still rages every day. 

‘World leaders must stand up to Trump. The last thing we need is another all-out war.’

Shadow justice secretary Richard Burgon, who is running to become Labour’s deputy leader, warned of the consequences of an all-out conflict, saying: ‘More than ever we need to avoid being the sidekick of Donald Trump.’

He added: ‘There is a real risk of Trump engaging in a war with Iran that would be even worse than that on Iraq.

‘We need an international movement against war and for peace. In increasingly dangerous times, it’s vital our party plays its role in that movement.’

But the bookies’ favourite to replace Mr Corbyn, shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer, was careful to apportion blame. 

In a careful tweet he said: ‘This is an extremely serious situation. There’s a clear danger of further violence and escalation in the Middle East. 

‘We need to engage, not isolate Iran. All sides need to de-escalate tensions and prevent further conflict.’

 

Link hienalouca.com

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