The US is deploying 1,000 additional troops to the Middle East amid rising tensions with Iran, the Pentagon announced on Monday.
More troops, but ‘no war’
Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said in a statement that “the recent Iranian attacks validate the reliable, credible intelligence we have received on hostile behavior by Iranian forces and their proxy groups that threaten United States personnel and interests across the region.”
Shanahan added that the US did not seek conflict with Iran.
Iran go on with uranium enrichment
Iran meanwhile declared that it is about the violate a limit set under the 2015 nuclear deal with the world powers on its enriched uranium stockpiles as early as June 27. Islamic Republic’s atomic energy agency revealed that it had already quadrupled production, a major concern for the US as the material can be used to make nuclear weapons.
Saudis call for cooperation
Saudi Arabia’ Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said that countries needed to cooperate for safe and open shipping routes in the Gulf to ensure steady supply of oil to the world markets.
Markets are awaiting an OPEC+ meeting early in July to see producers agree on an extension to supply cuts for propping prices.
Xi heads to Pyongyang
Chinese president Xi Jinping will be making his first state visit to North Korea’s capital Pyongyang on Thursday and Friday, China’s state media reported. Jinping hopes to calm down tensions over NK’s nuclear program. With Xi meeting Kim Jong-un, it’s yet to be confirmed if he will later this month meet with US President Donald Trump at the sidelines of the G20 summit in Japan.
Tories eliminate contenders
In the UK, a secret ballot will take place in the Conservative Party as the Tories’ eliminate more contenders from the leadership race. Lawmakers will vote later in the afternoon to choose among six candidates among them the front-runner Boris Johnson.