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Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif will attend the World Economic Forum in Davos this month, according to a Swiss newspaper, potentially setting the stage for a clash with U.S. President Donald Trump.
Tuesday’s report in the Tages-Anzeiger cited organizers of the event, and said that Zarif explicitly confirmed his attendance after the U.S. killing of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani near Baghdad airport last week. Iraqi President Barham Salih will also be in Davos, the paper added.
With Trump expected to attend, three of the main protagonists in the current flareup of Middle East tensions would be present at the Jan. 21 to Jan. 24 conference in the Swiss ski resort.
Concerns are mounting that Iran will seek to avenge the assassination of Soleimani, who led proxy militias that extended Iran’s power across the region, by striking at U.S. interests and those of its allies. Iran’s Supreme Leader has threatened “severe retaliation.”
Washington hasn’t had diplomatic relations with Tehran for decades.
The WEF promotes itself as a platform for dialogue and has been the scene of several diplomatic milestones, including talks between Yasser Arafat and Israel’s then-Foreign Minister Shimon Peres in 1994. A WEF spokesman said the list of participants will be published on Jan. 14.
(Updates with background, detail)
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