Middle East tensions are likely to intensify after Iran said it identified and dismantled CIA a "large" spy operation in its country.
Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, said the country dismantled a network of CIA officers, according to Reuters, which quoted state broadcaster IRIB.
“We shared the information about the exposed network with our allies that led to the identification and arrest of CIA intelligence agents, Shamkhani reportedly said.
The latest development is far from the first instance of American spies reportedly operating in Iran. From 2009 through 2013, dozens of American spies were executed or imprisoned in both Iran and China as the result of a flaw in how the spies communicated with their CIA superiors.
Why It's Important
Tensions between the U.S. and Iran appear to have taken a turn for the worse after President Donald Trump withdrew from the nuclear deal signed by his predecessor, President Barack Obama.
The U.K.'s Telegraph reported earlier this month that terrorist operatives linked to Iran were stockpiling explosive materials near London. British intelligence forces and police uncovered in 2015 three metric tones of ammonium nitrate, which is a standard ingredient in homemade bombs.
It is unclear to what extent, if any, U.S.-Iranian tensions will worsen moving forward.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo the Trump administration does not want to start a war. His comments came said prior to Iran's report of dismantling a spy operation but after he accused the country of attacking oil tankers
The former CIA chief did state the Trump administration will take action to "defend American interests."
Oil Tankers Attacked In Gulf Of Oman: How The World Is Reacting
U.S. Will Try To Zero Out Iranian Oil Exports As It Chooses Not To Extend Waivers; Prices Up In Response
Photo by Danielle Harte via Wikimedia.
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