Britain's Foreign Secretary said on Monday that the U.S. and Iran risked ending up in an unintentional conflict over their dispute regarding Tehran's nuclear activities.
"We are very worried about the risk of a conflict happening by accident with escalation that is unintended really on either side but ends with some kind of conflict," Jeremy Hunt said in Brussels prior to a summit of EU foreign ministers.
"So we will be sharing those concerns with my European counterparts, with [US Secretary of State] Mike Pompeo," he added, speaking to Sky News as he arrived in Brussels.
Hunt underlined that an understanding was required on the desires of each side.
"Most of all we need to make sure that we don’t end up putting Iran back on the path to re-nuclearization," he said.
He stressed that a nucqearized Iran could lead to the country's neighbors also seeking to "become nuclear powers."
"This is already the most unstable region in the world and this would be a massive step in the wrong direction," he added.
Last week, the U.S. imposed new sanctions on four Iranian metal sectors in the latest component of President Donald Trump administration's "maximum pressure" campaign on Tehran after sending a carrier strike group and a bomber task force to the region in response to unspecified threats from Iran.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Iran would resume high-level enrichment of uranium to near weapons-grade levels if Tehran’s interests in the nuclear deal are not protected within 60 days.
After it unilaterally withdrew in May 2018 from a 2015 nuclear deal between world powers and Iran, the Trump administration has been working to scuttle the deal, seeking a variety of measures including a re-imposition of oil sanctions that Washington had lifted as part of the deal.
The U.K. and European partners, including France and Germany believe the deal reached with Iran in 2015 should continue and they have expressed regrets over the one-sided U.S. withdrawal from the agreement.