US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken spoke by phone with his counterparts in China, Turkey and Saudi Arabia, urging them to pressure Iran not to launch any attack against Israel, the State Department said Thursday.

“No one has an interest in escalation” in the region and “all countries should call on Iran not to escalate,” US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller told reporters.

Mr Blinken also spoke to Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallad “to reaffirm our strong support for Israel following the (Iranian) threats”, Mr Miller added.

White House spokeswoman Karin Jean-Pierre said for her part that Washington had “warned” Tehran against any potential attack on Israel.

US President Joe Biden yesterday reaffirmed his administration’s support for Israel after Iran threatened to retaliate for the deadly bombing of its consulate in Damascus, the capital of Syria.

Iran is “threatening to launch a major attack against Israel,” the US president said during a joint White House press conference with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei declared earlier in the day that Israel would be “punished” for the April 1 attack on the Syrian capital.

The bombing of the Iranian consulate in Damascus killed 16 people, including seven members of the Revolutionary Guards, an elite body of the Islamic Republic’s armed forces, according to NGOs.

Tehran had already said it would retaliate for the deadly bombing, which further raised tensions in the region, where the situation was already extremely tense due to the war between Israel and the Iranian-backed Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas.