Trump calls off Iranian strikes, ratcheting down tension

U.S. & World
Donald Trump

President Donald Trump speaks to reporters before boarding Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, June 18, 2019, for a short trip to Andrews Air Force Base, Md., and then on to Orlando, Fla. for a rally. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump said Friday that the U.S. was “cocked and loaded’ to retaliate against Iran for downing an American drone, but canceled the missile strikes 10 minutes before they were to be executed after being told some 150 people could die.

Trump tweeted Friday that the U.S. will never allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon. But he said he’s in no hurry to respond to the downing of the U.S. surveillance drone over the Strait of Hormuz. His statement was the latest indication that he does not want to escalate the clash with Tehran, but he didn’t rule out a future U.S. strike.

He said U.S. economic sanctions are crippling the Iranian economy and more are being added.

Iran claimed Friday it had issued several warnings before shooting down the drone over what it said was Iranian territory.

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