(Bloomberg) -- Iran said Monday that an expansion of the war between Israel and Hamas was increasingly becoming unavoidable, a signal the main backer of the Palestinian militant group was preparing for a wider conflict. 

“The time for political solutions is running out and the possible expansion of the war on other fronts is approaching the inevitable stage,” Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter.

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Iran supports armed groups around the Middle East including Hamas in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon, but has denied any involvement in the unprecedented Oct. 7 attacks that killed 1,300 people in Israel. 

Israel is preparing for a ground invasion to “wipe out” Hamas following the assault. Tehran has repeatedly called on Israel to lift its siege of Hamas-ruled Gaza and stop air strikes that have so far claimed more than 2,750 lives in the Palestinian enclave, warning that the conflict will escalate if Israel doesn’t end what it describes as war crimes. 

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Hezbollah, one of the Middle East’s most powerful militias, has repeatedly exchanged fire with Israeli troops on the border with Lebanon over the past week, raising the specter of a second front opening up in Israel’s north.

Amirabdollahian toured the Middle East last week, including visits to the leaders of Hamas in Qatar and Hezbollah in Lebanon. Hezbollah, which fought a month-long war with Israel in 2006, has warned that it stands ready to act. 

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“We are fully prepared — when the time comes — for any action that we will carry out,” Hezbollah’s Deputy Secretary General Sheikh Naim Qasem said after the meeting.

Hezbollah’s battle-hardened fighters have in recent years seen extensive combat in Syria, where they fought on the side of President Bashar al-Assad, and the group has an arsenal of precision-guided missiles that can reach deep into Israel.

Amirabdollahian’s comments come as US Secretary of State Antony Blinken returned to Israel Monday following talks with Arab officials, as diplomatic efforts intensify to avert a wider Middle East conflict. President Joe Biden is weighing visiting Israel himself and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz is expected to arrive Tuesday.

White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said Sunday on CBS News’s Face the Nation that the US had held back-channel talks with Iran in recent days to press it not to expand the conflict.

On Saturday, the US announced it was sending a second group of warships to the Eastern Mediterranean as part of its deterrence effort.

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