WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on developments in Washington on Iran. (all times local):
President Donald Trump is suggesting that Iran bears some culpability for attacks in its capital that killed at least 12 people.
Trump says in a statement that “states that sponsor terrorism risk falling victim to the evil they promote.”
But Trump also says the U.S. grieves and prays for innocent victims and for the Iranian people. He says the Iranian people are “going through such challenging times.”
Trump’s comments are much harsher than the initial reaction from his administration. Trump’s State Department had issued a statement earlier Wednesday extending condolences and condemning the attack while saying terrorism had no place in the civilized world. That initial statement did not include Trump’s allegation that Iran sponsors terrorism.
The U.S. has designated Iran as a state sponsor of terrorism since 1984.
The Senate has cleared the way for action on bipartisan legislation that would authorize President Donald Trump to impose new sanctions on Iran.
The procedural vote to move forward was 92-7 on Wednesday.
The bill would impose mandatory sanctions on people involved in Iran’s ballistic missile program and anyone who does business with them. The measure also would apply terrorism sanctions to the country’s Revolutionary Guards and enforce an arms embargo.
Several senators had sought a delay in the vote until next week after the twin deadly attacks against Iran’s parliament and the shrine of Iran’s revolutionary leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini that killed at least 12 people. The Islamic State group claimed responsibility.
Republicans and some Democrats went ahead with the previously scheduled vote.
The United States is condemning what it calls “terrorist attacks” in the Iranian capital of Tehran.
State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert says the U.S. is sending thoughts and prayers to the Iranian people following attacks that struck Iran’s parliament and the mausoleum of its modern founder. Nauert says the U.S. is expressing condolences to the victims and their families.
Nauert says that “the depravity of terrorism has no place in a peaceful, civilized world.”
The U.S. statement of solidarity with the attack’s victims is notable because of the deep distrust between the U.S. and Iran. The two countries don’t maintain diplomatic relations and the Trump administration has emphasized the need to counter Iran’s influence.
The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for the attack.
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