Pompeo’s trip to Saudi Arabia and Israel comes before a May 12 deadline on whether to abandon the Iran nuclear deal. AFP PHOTO / SAUDI ROYAL PALACE / BANDAR AL-JALOUD
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U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo lashed out at Iran during a rapid tour of Middle East allies Sunday ahead of a crucial White House decision on whether to quit the nuclear deal with Tehran. Meanwhile, French President Emmanuel Macron and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani spoke by telephone and agreed to work together in coming weeks to preserve the 2015 Iran agreement, the Elysee said in a statement. After setting off on his first diplomatic trip only hours after being sworn in, Pompeo met with Saudi and Israeli leaders, two countries with especially close strategic bonds with the United States. In Riyadh earlier, Pompeo, who met with Saudi King Salman, said the U.S. would abandon the nuclear deal with Iran, reached under U.S. President Donald Trump's predecessor, unless talks with European partners yielded improvements to ensure the Islamic Republic never possesses nuclear weapons.Pompeo's trip comes as the U.S. president considers whether or not to abandon a self-imposed May 12 deadline for the Iran nuclear deal he sees as deeply flawed.
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