June 21, 2019 / 12:18 PM / a month ago

EU concerned over Gulf developments, but sees no need to intervene

BRUSSELS, June 21 (Reuters) - European Union leaders are very concerned about the tensions between Iran and the United State in the Gulf, but see no reason to intervene with a specific statement of their own, their chairman Donald Tusk said on Friday after an EU summit.

After weeks of rising tension following a spate of attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf region, Iran said on Thursday it had shot down an unmanned U.S. military surveillance drone with a surface-to-air missile.

Iranian officials told Reuters on Friday that Tehran had received a message from U.S. President Donald Trump warning that a U.S. attack on Iran was imminent but saying he was against war and wanted talks on a range of issues.

“I think that sometimes it is better not to intervene,” Tusk told a news conference in response to a question on whether the EU discussed the situation in the Gulf.

“The biggest problems in our history were always provoked by too active a policy not too passive,” he said.

“Of course we following the situation closely and we are very concerned about the developments in the Gulf region, but pragmatically there was no reason to prepare a specific European statement. I think our position is quite responsible,” he said. (Reporting By Jan Strupczewski)

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