2nd LD: U.S. Secretary of State vows to further curb Iranian influence in Mideast

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CAIRO, Jan. 10 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Thursday that the United States will "use diplomacy" and work with partners to curb Iran's influence in the Middle East region.

"The nations of the Middle East will never enjoy security, achieve economic stability, or advance the dreams of their peoples if Iran's regime persists on its current course," Pompeo said during a speech at the American University in Cairo.

Pompeo said that the U.S. administration is confronting Iran's "campaigns of destruction and destabilization in the region and around the world," stressing that the U.S. economic sanctions against Iran are among the strongest in history, and will keep getting tougher until Iran changes its policies that threaten the United States and the international community.

"The United States is working with partners in the region and beyond to stop malign activity by Iran and its proxies in Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, Yemen, and elsewhere," he added.

"Feb. 11 will mark 40 years since this brutal regime came to power. The Trump Administration stands with the Iranian people, as they demand new freedoms and accountability they deserve," the U.S. top diplomat added.

Pompeo arrived in Cairo late Wednesday following stops in Jordan and Iraq, in a tour for the Middle East that also includes Bahrain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Oman.

Earlier on Thursday, he held a talk with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi as both asserted the depth of the longstanding strategic partnership between the two countries. Enditem

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