The Times report, published late Thursday, cited multiple senior administration officials involved in or briefed on the deliberations of the strikes. It said Trump had earlier approved the attacks in retaliation to Iran shooting down an unmanned American spy drone, and officials were still expecting the operation to go ahead as late as 7 p.m. ET.
The Times said it wasn’t clear whether Trump had simply changed his mind about attacking Iran, or the administration switched course due to logistics and strategic considerations. It also wasn’t clear if the attacks would still go ahead, according to the report.
The White House and the U.S. Department of Defense did not return CNBC’s requests for comment sent outside business hours. The Times said that the White House and Pentagon officials declined to comment. No government officials asked the Times to withhold the article, the report said.
Tensions between Washington and Tehran have been rising since the Trump administration’s decision to withdraw from the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement.
Before the confrontation over the American drone, the U.S. accused Iran of recent attacks on oil tankers in the Persian Gulf region.
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