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US sanctions target Iran’s people, Islamic establishment: President Rouhani

President Hassan Rouhani says the US sanctions are meant to bring Iran’s Islamic establishment to its knees by exerting pressure on the nation, because Washington sees a powerful Iran as an obstacle to its policies in the Middle East.

Rouhani made the remarks in an address to Majlis, the Iranian Parliament, while presenting the annual state budget on Tuesday.

“The US, by directly subjecting the Iranian nation, people in the region as well as international trade companies to plots, sanctions and pressure, is chiefly seeking to bring the powerful establishment in the Islamic Republic of Iran to its knees,” the president said.

The Americans, he added, view a powerful Iran as a major obstacle in this sensitive region, stressing that they are “afraid of Iran’s capabilities” and have therefore attempted to impede its domestic progress.

The US has been trying to create frustration among the Iranian population about the country’s future and to make them think that the Islamic establishment is ineffective, said the president.

“No one can deny the sanctions’ negative impacts on the country’s economy as well as the people’s lives; but also no one can say that the US will [eventually] achieve its goals,” President Rouhani stated.

Reuters: Iran to withstand sanctions; US isolated

A European diplomat says the high oil prices and the US’ international isolation would lessen the impacts of new US sanctions on Iran.

Under the administration of US President Donald Trump, Washington has taken an increasingly hostile approach toward Tehran in what is viewed by Iranian officials as an economic war.

Back in May, the US withdrew from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), in defiance of international objections.

Since then, the US has unleashed its “toughest ever” sanctions against Iran. It has also warned of severe penalties for companies that evade the bans and engage in business dealings with Iran.

Iran says the American pressure campaign will definitely fail.

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