RNA - "They [Lavrov and Pompeo] have discussed the situation related to the murder of Iranian Revolutionary Guards' Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani by the US military in an airstrike on the Baghdad airport," the Russian foreign ministry stated.
"Lavrov stressed that the purposeful actions of a UN member state on eliminating officials of another UN member state, especially on the territory of a third sovereign state without giving it prior notice, blatantly violate the principles of international law and should be condemned," it added.
Lavrov has also called on Washington to abandon unlawful forceful tactics and to resolve issues through negotiations.
"The Russian minister has pointed out that this step by the US is fraught with serious consequences for peace and security in the region and that it does not aid the efforts on finding solutions to difficult issues accumulated in the Middle East. On the contrary, it leads to a new wave of escalation. Moscow urges Washington to abandon unlawful forceful tactics of achieving its goals on the international arena and to resolve any issues at the negotiating table," the foreign ministry said.
Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin voiced concern to his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, about the US airstrike that killed General Soleimani.
Both leaders raised the possibility the assassination of General Soleimani could further escalate the situation in the Middle East, the Kremlin announced in a statement.
“This action can seriously aggravate the situation in the region,” the Kremlin quoted Putin as saying during a telephone conversation with Macron on Friday.
Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei has stated those who assassinated General Soleimani must await a tough revenge.
The top commander was martyred in a targeted assassination attack by US aircraft at Baghdad International Airport early Friday morning. The airstrike also martyred Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, deputy commander of Iraq's Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), or Hashad al-Shabi. The PMF media arm reported that the two were martyred in an American airstrike that targeted their vehicle on the road to the airport.
The attack came amid tensions that started by the US attack on PMF units that killed 28 Iraqi popular forces. A day later, Iraqi people attacked the US embassy in Baghdad. On Wednesday Trump ordered about 750 US soldiers deployed to the Middle East.
US officials earlier suggested they were to engage in further retaliatory attacks in Iraq.
The developments also represent a major downturn in Iraq-US relations that could further undermine US influence in the region and American troops in Iraq and weaken Washington’s hand in its pressure campaign against Iran.
The attack represents a dramatic escalation by the US toward Iran after months of tensions. The tensions take root in President Donald Trump’s decision in May 2018 to withdraw the US from Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers, struck under his predecessor.