WASHINGTON: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo yesterday accused Iran of ties to Al-Qaeda and declined to say whether the Trump administration had legal authority to invade the country. Testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Pompeo hedged on whether the authorization of force by the US Congress days after the September 11, 2001 attacks would allow the United States to strike Iran. “I would prefer just to leave that to lawyers,” Pompeo told Senator Rand Paul, a Republican who is critical of US foreign interventions. “The factual question with respect to Iran’s connections to Al-Qaeda is very real. They have hosted Al-Qaeda, they have permitted Al-Qaeda to transit their country,” he said. “There is no doubt there is a connection between the Islamic Republic of Iran and Al-Qaeda. Period, full stop,” he said.- AFP