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US defense chief cautions against strike on Iran

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AFP
November 11, 2011

WASHINGTON — US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on Thursday warned of the risks from any military strike on Iran, saying it could have a “serious impact” on the region without halting Tehran’s nuclear program.

“You’ve got to be careful of unintended consequences here,” he told reporters.

“Those consequences could involve not only not really deterring Iran from what they want to do, but more importantly it could have a serious impact on the region and it could have a serious impact on US forces in the region.”

The Pentagon chief said he agreed with the view of his predecessor, former defense secretary Robert Gates, that bombing Iran would only delay the nuclear project by about three years.

Panetta said the United States was focused on diplomacy and was holding talks with allies to impose “additional sanctions” on Iran over its nuclear work. A strike on Iran ought to be “a last resort,” he said.

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This article was posted: Friday, November 11, 2011 at 3:55 am





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