Amid the dramatic escalation of US-Iran tension, China has criticised the United States for escalating the situation in the Gulf region through its excessive use of force. According to China, the recent air raid directed by US President Donald Trump which killed Iran's top commander Qassem Soleimani along with other military personnel has further aggravated the conflict between Washington and Tehran. While both parties were already at odds over Iran's nuclear activities.
In the wake of the US strike, Iran has publically announced 'harsh retaliation' while Trump has shrugged the threats saying he will send 'more beautiful troops' their way. The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said at a daily briefing on January 6 that 'US's risky behaviour' in the recent days is against the 'basic norms' of international relations. Beijing further called on the US 'not to abuse its force' and further 'urged' the relevant parties to exercise restraint in order to avoid 'situation worsening'.
#USmilitaryadventurism VIOLATES basic norms governing international relations & AGGRAVATES tensions in Middle East. China consistently opposes the use of force in international relations. Neither military means nor maximum pressure will work.@StateDept pic.twitter.com/WKXos4ABfA— Spokesperson发言人办公室 (@MFA_China) January 6, 2020
Shuang not only said that China is 'highly concerned' about the spiralling tensions in the region but also criticised Washington for threatening sanctions against Tehran in response to Iraqi parliament resolution asking foreign troops to leave the country. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said that the decision of the Trump administration to unilaterally withdraw from the 2015 nuclear deal is the primary cause of nuclear tension.
The spokesperson said that even after Iran was forced to reduce the compliance of the nuclear deal due to external factors, the country has been displaying restraint and “had clearly expressed its political will to comprehensively implement the deal”. He emphasised that Iran is not violating its obligation to the nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT) since it was Trump administration who defied its international responsibilities by withdrawing from the deal.
Security measures have been enhanced in the US, who have ordered scaling back of operations by US-led coalition in Iraq. The US embassy in Baghdad has 'urged' its citizens to leave the country fearing retaliation from Iran and its allies over the recent killings. Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei had reportedly warned of 'severe revenge for the criminals who bloodied their foul hands with his blood'. Khamenei further said that Soleimani's work and his path will not be stopped.
....targeted 52 Iranian sites (representing the 52 American hostages taken by Iran many years ago), some at a very high level & important to Iran & the Iranian culture, and those targets, and Iran itself, WILL BE HIT VERY FAST AND VERY HARD. The USA wants no more threats!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 4, 2020