President Donald Trump waves as he boards Air Force One for a trip to New York to attend a fundraiser, Thursday, May 16, 2019, at Andrews Air Force Base, Md. (Evan Vucci/Associated Press)

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump says he hopes the U.S. is not on a path to war with Iran amid fears that his two most hawkish advisers could be angling for such a conflict.

Asked Thursday if the U.S. was going to war with Iran, the president replied, “I hope not” — a day after he repeated a desire for dialogue with the Islamic Republic, tweeting, “I’m sure that Iran will want to talk soon.”

Trump’s tone contrasts with a series of moves by the U.S. and Iran that have sharply escalated tensions in the Middle East in recent days.

Top leaders in Congress received a classified briefing on Iran Thursday, but many other lawmakers from both parties have criticized the White House for not keeping them informed.

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