The United States Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo has said that the killing of Iran’s General Qassem Soleimani was the right decision by the American government.
Pompeo, who said this in a live broadcast on Tuesday, insisted that President Donald Trump had an entirely legal basis for Baghdad attack, and expressed confidence that all legal procedures were followed.
According to him, “Anytime a president makes a decision of this magnitude, there are multiple pieces of information that come before, we presented that to him in all the broad details and all the best intelligence. We evaluated the relevant risks and the opportunity that we thought might present itself at some point, and we could see clearly that not only had Soleimani done all of the things that we have recounted.
“In addition, there were continuing efforts on behalf of this terrorist to build out a network of campaign activities that was going to lead potentially to the death of many more Americans.
“It is the right decision, we got it right, the Department of Defence did an excellent work and the President had an entirely legal, appropriate and a basis as well as a decision that fits perfectly within our strategy on how to counter the threat”, he said.
While fielding questions from Journalists, Pompeo stated that Soleimani was not in Iraq on diplomatic mission, stressing that the statement from the Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi was untrue.
“Does anybody here believe that? Is there any history that would indicate that it was remotely possible for this kind gentleman, this diplomat of great order Qasem Soleimani had traveled to Baghdad for the idea of conducting a Peace Mission? We know that wasn’t true, we not only know the history, we know in that moment that was not true, he was not there on a diplomatic issue,” Pompeo emphasized.
He further noted that the ‘Soleimani strike’ was part of the administration’s maximum pressure campaign and going forward, the Iranians should understand as they develop their calculus, that similar actions such as the strike could well continue to be a feature of the maximum pressure campaign.
In his words, “The Iranians made a bad decision to kill an American, we hope they won’t make another bad decision just like that one. In the event the Iranians make another bad choice, our President will respond the way that he did last week which was decisive, serious and a message to Iran about the constraint that we are going to place on that regime, so that it doesn’t continue to put American lives at risk”.
Speaking on Iran getting a nuclear weapon, the Secretary of State insisted that Iran won’t get a nuclear weapon, adding that President Trump could not be more clear, stressing that on their watch, Iran is not getting a nuclear weapon.
“We hope we will be successful making Iran behave like a normal nation, we will deny them the capacity to go about their nuclear programmes and threaten not only Americans and our lives.. To keep America safe, which is our mission set, and also to create enhanced stability throughout the Middle East,” he remarked.
Recall that Qassem Soleimani, 62, was killed by two missiles fired from an MQ9 Reaper drone, which struck the general after he arrived at Baghdad airport.