UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has broken his silence over the killing of top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani in a US airstrike.
Mr Johnson has returned from his holiday in the Carribean, a holiday which he refused to cut short despite calls for him to come back to the UK as tensions rose in the Middle East. Mr Johnson has confirmed he has spoken to French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and US President Donald Trump following the attack.
In a statement, Mr Johnson said;
“General Qassem Soleimani posed a threat to all our interests and was responsible for a pattern of disruptive, destabilising behaviour in the region.
“Given the leading role he has played in actions that have led to the deaths of thousands of innocent civilians and western personnel, we will not lament his death.”
‘Lament’ means to complain or express grief, something Mr Johnson said the UK would not be doing in relation to the death of General Qassem Soleimani.
The Prime Minister added that the UK “is in close contact with all sides to encourage de-escalation” and warned that “all calls for retaliation or reprisals will simply lead to more violence in the region”.
His words have echoed those of UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab and other EU leaders who called for de-escalation straight after the attack.
On Sunday, the Iraqi Parliament voted to expel foreign troops after thousands attended a funeral procession for the late General Soleimani.