May 18, 2018:
US President Donald Trump withdraws from international nuclear deal with Iran and reimposes sanctions on Tehran. The Mail on Sunday later revealed that Sir Kim Darroch, then British ambassador to Washington, told No 10 Trump had abandoned the deal as an act of ‘diplomatic vandalism’ to spite his predecessor Barack Obama.
April 8, 2019:
Trump administration designates the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps as a foreign terrorist organisation. It had already listed the Quds Force, the IRGC’s special forces led by General Qasem Soleimani, as a terror group in 2007.
June 13, 2019:
US accuses Iran of attacking two tankers in the Strait of Hormuz, a key area for global oil supplies. Tehran denies responsibility.
June 20, 2019:
Iranians shoot down a US drone they claim was spying. Trump orders military strikes against IRGC, reversing the decision at the last moment.
July 18, 2019:
US shoots down an Iranian drone that it says flew too close to one of its warships in the Strait of Hormuz.
September 14, 2019:
America blames Iran for missile and rocket strikes against two
Saudi oil facilities that knock out 50 per cent of its crude production, causing oil prices to soar around the world.
December 9, 2019:
Rocket attack in Baghdad wounds members of Iraq’s
Counterterrorism Service who are being trained by the US. Americans again point the finger of blame at Iran.
December 13, 2019:
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warns any rocket attacks by
Iran or its proxies that harm Americans ‘will be answered by a decisive US response’.
December 27, 2019:
More than 30 rockets are fired at an Iraqi base where US forces are stationed. A US contractor is killed and the US blames Kataib Hezbollah, an Iranianbacked Iraqi militia.
December 29, 2019:
US launches air strikes against five Kataib Hezbollah sites in Iraq and Syria, killing 27 people.