US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday urged the UN Security Council to extend an arms embargo on Tehran. “Iran will hold a sword of Damocles over the economic stability of the Middle East, endangering nations like Russia and China that rely on stable energy prices,” Pompeo told the virtual session, referencing two opponents of prolonging the embargo.

The US is adamant about prolonging the ban on conventional arms sales to its adversary which expires in October and has threatened to use a disputed legal move to force a return of UN sanctions on Iran, AFP said.

Iran denies arming groups in the Middle East, including the Houthis, and blames regional tensions on Washington and its Gulf allies.

Tehran has warned it will respond if the embargo is extended, saying that such a decision would endanger the 2015 nuclear pact, Reuters reported. Under the deal, Tehran agreed to halt its disputed uranium enrichment program in exchange for sanctions relief.