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Canada wants to see ‘de-escalation’ between U.S. and Iran: Defence minister

What latest round of U.S. sanctions will mean for Iran
WATCH ABOVE: What latest round of U.S. sanctions will mean for Iran

OTTAWA — Canadian Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan is calling for calmer heads to prevail as a war of words between the U.S. and Iran threatens to turn into a war of bullets and bombs.

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Such a conflict could easily spill over into Iraq and the surrounding region, where around 850 Canadian soldiers are deployed as part of the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

Speaking from Brussels, where he is meeting counterparts from across NATO, Sajjan says Canada would like to see a “de-escalation” between the U.S. and Iran, including a shift back from military posturing to diplomacy.

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Trump says has ‘all the time in the world’ on Iran
Trump says has ‘all the time in the world’ on Iran

In the meantime, Sajjan says, officials are watching closely to ensure Canadians Forces members are prepared should the situation worsen.

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READ MORE: Trump imposes new round of ‘hard-hitting’ sanctions on Iran

The dispute revolves around U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from an agreement his predecessor Barack Obama signed with Iran that limits Iran’s nuclear program in return for lifting sanctions.

Iran has since been accused of attacking several oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman and threatened to stockpile more nuclear material than the agreement allowed, while the U.S. has imposed new sanctions and launched a cyberattack on an Iranian militia.

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How close to all-out war are the United States and Iran?
How close to all-out war are the United States and Iran?