Pompeo seeks "global coalition" against Iran

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Photo: Jacquelyn Martin/AFP/Getty Images

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday he wants to "build out a global coalition" against Iran, after a week that saw Washington on the brink of launching military action against Tehran.

Details: Pompeo made the comments as he prepared to fly to Saudi Arabia and then the United Arab Emirates to discuss with leaders there "the challenge that Iran presents," he said. Pompeo outlined his goals for a coalition "not only throughout the Gulf states but in Asia and in Europe that understands this challenge and that is prepared to push back against the world’s largest state sponsor of terror."

Driving the news: Trump authorized a retaliatory strike after Iran downed an unmanned U.S. drone. He aborted the mission Thursday night, saying he decided the casualty count was disproportionate. There have been reports that the president instead authorized a cyber operation against the Iranian military. Meanwhile, the Trump administration says cyberattacks against the U.S. are on the rise.

The big picture: During the press briefing, Pompeo did not rule out a more conciliatory approach to the situation, as President Trump had indicated earlier when he said he was willing to speak with the leaders of Iran under "no preconditions" and that all he's seeking out of a deal with Iran is a ban on the country obtaining nuclear weapons.

"We’re prepared to negotiate with no preconditions. They know precisely how to find us. And I am confident that at the very moment they’re ready to truly engage with us, we’ll be able to begin these conversations. I’m looking forward to that day. "
— Secretary of State Mike Pompeo

Go deeper: How Trump and Tehran came to the brink of war

What's next

⚖️ Live updates: Democrats close out their opening arguments

House managers wrapped up their three-day impeachment presentation with a direct appeal to the senators to think about the precedent their actions — or more notably their inaction — would have on democracy and Congress’ future ability to serve as a check on the president.

The close: Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) anticipated attacks on him, other House managers, the Ukraine whistleblower, and the Bidens from Trump's team, which begins its defense of the president on Saturday. He appealed directly to GOP senators: “Real political courage does not come from disagreement with our opponents, but disagreeing with our friends and our own party.”

Go deeperArrowJan 21, 2020 - Politics

Death toll climbs in coronavirus outbreak

41 people have died from an outbreak of a coronavirus strain that originated in Wuhan, China, AP reports.

The latest: The respiratory illness has made its way to Europe, with France confirming three cases, Reuters reports. France's Health Minister Agnès Buzyn said Friday two patients are hospitalized in Paris. The other case is in the southwestern city of Bordeaux. They had returned from a trip that had a stop in Wuhan.

Go deeperArrowJan 20, 2020 - World

Lawyer alleges Giuliani associate recorded Trump comments on Ukrainian ambassador

Photo: Oliver Contreras/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

The lawyer for Lev Parnas, a Rudy Giuliani associate, claims there is a recording of President Trump saying former Ukraine Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch should be fired, the Daily Beast reports.

The latest: Parnas said on Friday that he has turned the recording over to the House Intelligence Committee, per the New York Times — as Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) led House Democrats in laying out the case for impeaching Trump before the Senate.