The Christian Science Monitor

Missing from US-Iran clash, a back-channel safety valve

As tensions have risen between the United States and Iran over recent months, communications between the two longtime adversaries have been carried out over Twitter, through press interviews, and in speeches by leaders on the two sides – the latter more often than not aimed at domestic audiences.

When the U.S. Navy shot down an Iranian drone over the increasingly conflicted Strait of Hormuz Thursday, President Donald Trump announced the most recent incident in a statement from the White House. “This is the latest of many provocative and hostile actions by Iran against vessels operating in international waters,” he said. Iran on Friday denied it had lost any of its drones.

Missing from the mix of communications between the two foes, or so it seems, is the kind of back-channel diplomacy

A missing bufferPath to nuclear dealChannel blocker?

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