President Hassan Rouhani says Washington’s claims of seeking negotiations with Iran are “mere lies” and that the United States, in fact, intends to force the Iranian nation to its knees.
Contrary to what some are trying to promote, “the US does not possess the willingness for negotiations at all,” the president told a cabinet session in Tehran on Wednesday.
“The actions that it is taking are aimed at defeating the Iranian nation” and “making a return” to Iran, he added, referring to Washington’s ample presence and influence in the country prior to the Islamic Revolution in 1979.
Rouhani said the US subversive measures against Iran have all failed on international, regional, and political arenas, and that its propagandist attempts targeting the Islamic Republic have all been defeated.
Washington has been and will likewise be frustrated in its anti-Iran economic drive, he added.
The US administration said Monday it would not extend sanctions exemptions previously given to countries importing oil from Iran when they expire in early May.
At the same time, US special representative for Iran, Brian Hook, said in an interview with a Saudi television network that the US was ready to negotiate a new agreement with Iran that he said would cover Iran’s “nuclear program, their missile program, their regional aggression, and the arbitrary detention of foreign nationals, which include Americans.”
No talks with a bullying power
Iran has always favored talks and diplomacy, but it will not be negotiating with a bullying power, the president said. “Accepting such negotiations would mean humiliation and capitulation,” he added.
Negotiations, Rouhani noted, would only be possible under the aegis of mutual respect and only if the US relieves all the pressure it has been mounting on the country and apologizes for its illegal actions targeting the Iranian nation.
‘US cannot monopolize oil market’
Rouhani, however, said the US would not be able to monopolize the world’s oil market despite all its attempts.
“This is not possible. We will be selling our oil using various means,” he noted, and said the US would be oppressing all the oil companies and nations in the world, including its own, by pursuing such a policy.
The Iranian president finally pointed to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates’ recent pledges to make up for potential supply shortages, warning the two Arab states against their misbehavior towards the Islamic Republic.
‘Iran once saved Saudi Arabia, UAE’
The two states owe their existence today to Iran, which once refused to cooperate with the regime of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein in its decision to invade the Persian Gulf littoral states.
Before invading Saudi Arabia’s neighbor Kuwait, Saddam had said that Iraq “would soon be sharing 800 kilometers (497 miles) of borders [with Iran] in the Persian Gulf,” Rouhani said. “This shows that Saddam was planning to occupy Saudi Arabia, Oman, the Emirates, and Qatar in addition to Kuwait,” he added.
Had it not been for Iran’s “rational” decision back then not to cooperate with Saddam, “there would have been no trace of these states today,” the president stated.