Iran tensions: 1,500 US troops head to Middle East as Trump seals $7bn Saudi arms sale

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White House downplays prospect of conflict but blames Iran for tanker bombings and Iraq attack

The US will send hundreds of additional troops and a dozen fighter jets to the Middle East in the coming weeks to counter what the Pentagon has said is an escalating campaign by Iran to plan attacks against the US and its interests in the region.

And for the first time, Pentagon officials on Friday publicly blamed Iran and its proxies for recent tanker bombings near United Arab Emirates and a rocket attack in Iraq.

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