Iran said Sunday that it was cutting off oil exports to France and Britain in a preemptive strike against European economic sanctions, while top U.S. and British officials warned against a military attack on Iran's disputed nuclear program.
Iran's retaliatory oil ban was the latest instance of high-stakes brinkmanship surrounding Tehran's nuclear ambitions. Iran says its program is solely for peaceful purposes, but the U.S. and many of its allies suspect the goal is to develop weapons.
Speculation has intensified in recent weeks about a possible Israeli or U.S. strike on Iranian nuclear sites, even as an apparent shadow war rages featuring assassinations of Iranian scientists, sabotage of Iran's nuclear technology and recent bomb plots that targeted Israeli diplomats in India and Georgia and, authorities suspect, in Thailand.
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