Oil steady as U.S.-Iran row balances trade worries

U.S. President Donald Trump flanked by hawkish National Security Advisor John Bolton

U.S. President Donald Trump flanked by hawkish National Security Advisor John Bolton

Trump suggested on Tuesday that talks with Iran were an option, saying "we're ready to make a real deal".

But two days later, while speaking to a veterans' group, the president said the USA was "ready to make a real deal" with Iran.

"Although Trump has been running the office for a year, his speech resembles that of a gambler", said Gen. Soleimani.

A top Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) commander in Iran says his forces are ready to confront US forces should President Donald Trump act on his warning that Tehran will "suffer consequences" if it threatens the United States. You may begin a war, but it is us who will end it.

On Sunday, President Rouhani warned President Trump about his hostile stance against Iran, saying, "Mr. Trump, do not play with the lion's tail, this would only lead to regret".

"Suleimani told Trump: "It is not in our president's dignity to respond to you, but I, as a soldier, will", before adding: "[Your] language belongs to cabarets. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was down 3 cents at $67.86 a barrel, clawing back earlier losses.

In a tit-for-tat exchange, Trump was quick to escalate the rhetoric against Rouhani using a strongly worded ALL-CAPS tweet, which warned Iran never to threaten the USA again or they would suffer consequences the likes of which "few in history has suffered before".

Iran has often denounced US military presence in the Persian Gulf, including the Navy's 5th Fleet headquarters in Bahrain.

Earlier in Monday's session, the market had risen after President Donald Trump warned of dire consequences for Iran if it threatened the United States.

Iran has already filed a complaint against the US with the International Court of Justice, citing its withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal and sanctions against Tehran, Rohani said.

Administration officials have said in recent weeks that sanctions waivers may be offered to select countries in efforts to wean the world off Iranian oil, a tactic was used under the Obama administration to avoid supply shocks.

He also said that the Red Sea, a critical waterway linking the Suez Canal and the Indian Ocean basin, was "no longer secure" with US military assets stationed in the area.

Those sanctions are now set to be reimposed in November, causing more than 50 worldwide firms to exit the Iranian market, according to State Department policy and planning director Brian Hook.

Supreme leader Ali Khamenei on Saturday backed President Hassan Rouhani's suggestion that Iran might block Gulf oil exports if its own exports are stopped.

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