German Chancellor Angela Merkel gives a speech during an event on the occasion of the World Refugee Day at the German Historical Museum in Berlin, June 20, 2018. (AFP)

June 21, 2018

Measures are needed to counter Iran’s “aggressive tendencies” in the Middle East, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday after talks in Jordan with King Abdullah.

The Jordanian monarch said that peace in the region could only take place once the Palestinians have a state with Jerusalem as its capital.

Merkel said on Thursday that while European countries wanted to maintain the 2015 accord, they shared concerns over Iran’s ballistic missile program, its presence in Syria and its role in the war in Yemen.

In Syria, Iran is a big military supporter of President Bashar al-Assad, sending some of its own forces there and backing Shi’ite militias from Lebanon and Iraq who are fighting on the ground. Gulf and Western countries accuse Tehran of arming the Houthi group in Yemen, which it denies.

She also voiced support for Jordanian concern about Iranian activity in southwestern Syria, near its border and that of the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, where Tehran’s ally Damascus is ramping up a military operation.

“You live not just with the Syria conflict, but also we see Iran’s activities with regard to Israel’s security and with regard to Jordan’s border” she said. Merkel said earlier this month after meeting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that the question of Iran’s regional influence was “worrying, especially for Israel’s security”.

Reuters

About Track Persia

Track PersiaTrack Persia is a Platform run by dedicated analysts who spend much of their time researching the Middle East, in due process we fall upon many indications of growing expansionary ambitions on the part of Iran in the MENA region and the wider Islamic world. These ambitions commonly increase tensions and undermine stability.