Merkley Calls for De-Escalation with Iran

WASHINGTON, DC — Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley released the following statement after Iran launched ballistic missiles at Iraqi bases housing U.S. service members as retaliation for the drone strike that killed General Qasem Soleimani:

“We are in a precarious moment but war is not inevitable. After Iran’s attack last night on Iraqi bases housing U.S. forces, both sides need to find off-ramps to avoid conflict from spiraling further out of control. Iran claims it does not seek escalation or war. Now is our chance to let them prove it.

“President Trump should look at diplomatic options and remember that our greatest strength has never been our military might but our global leadership.  When senior administration officials brief me and my colleagues this afternoon, I will press the administration to produce a strategy that engages our allies and avoids war, prevents Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, and responds to Iran’s malign activities in the region.”