Pompeo: US military would only hit lawful targets in Iran

Pompeo: US military would only hit lawful targets in Iran
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivers a statement on Iraq and Syria, at President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago property, Sunday, Dec. 29, 2019, in Palm Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday that any target the U.S. military may strike in Iran, in the event Iran retaliates against America for killing its most powerful general, would be legal under the laws of armed conflict.

Pompeo was asked on ABC’s “This Week” about President Donald Trump’s assertion Saturday on Twitter that the United States has 52 Iranian targets in its sights, “some at a very high level & important to Iran & the Iranian culture.”

The laws of armed conflict prohibit the deliberate targeting of cultural sites under most circumstances.

“Every target that we strike will be a lawful target, and it will be a target designed with a singular mission — defending and protecting America,” Pompeo said.