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US threats will not work against Iranians: Zarif


The Iranian foreign minister has condemned US President Donald Trump’s latest speech against Iran as “inane,” stressing that using threats against the Islamic Republic will prove to be ineffective.

“Allegations, threats and profanity will never intimidate Iranians. Trump will eventually discover this; as every predecessor did,” Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted after Trump officially announced on Friday that he would not certify Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), with world powers.

“Everyone knew Trump’s friendship was for sale to the highest bidder. We now know that his geography is too,” Zarif wrote in another Tweet, referring to Trump’s using of the “Arabian Gulf” instead of the Persian Gulf in his speech.

“No wonder supporters of Trump’s inane Iran speech are those bastions of democracy in the Persian Gulf: KSA, UAE and Bahrain,” he noted.

Following Trump’s speech, the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported that the Riyadh regime backs Trump’s “firm strategy” on Iran.

“The kingdom backs and welcomes the firm strategy on Iran and its aggressive policy that was announced by US President Donald Trump,” it said in a statement.

Trump called Iran a “rogue” state and repeated Washington’s allegations that Tehran sponsors terrorism and continues “aggression in the Middle East and all around the world.”

Zarif denounced Trump’s hostile rhetoric against Iran in another Tweet, saying, “For the definition of rogue, compare Trump’s words with President Rouhani’s response.”

Trump speech pile of delusional claims: Rouhani

The Iranian president says the US president’s speech against Iran was nothing more than insults and delirious talk.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani slammed Trump’s speech against the Islamic Republic as nothing more than insults and delirious talk, urging the US president to brush up on his world history and geography to improve his comprehension of international obligations and global ethics, etiquette and conventions.

Apart from his refusal to certify the JCPOA, Trump also warned in his strategic review of US policy on Iran that he might ultimately terminate the deal, in defiance of other world powers and undermining a landmark victory of multilateral diplomacy.

While Trump did not pull Washington out of the nuclear deal, he gave the US Congress 60 days to decide whether to reimpose economic sanctions against Tehran that were lifted under the pact. Reimposing sanctions would put the US at odds with other signatories to the accord and the European Union.

Top negotiators from Iran and six world powers attend an EU-hosted meeting about the Iran nuclear deal at the UN headquarters in New York on September 20, 2017. (Photo by AP)

Trump called on Congress and US allies to address “serious flaws” in the JCPOA, including the deal’s “sunset clauses” that will put an end to restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program after a few years as well as the agreement’s “total silence on Iran’s missile programs.”

He also announced sanctions on Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), which he accused of destabilizing the Middle East and threatening American interests in the region.

Rouhani questioned the US motives in expressing concern over Iran’s regional role, saying the US is providing arms to “aggressive countries” to target innocent people in the region, including in Yemen.

The Western allies of the US, including the EU and the leaders of France, Britain and Germany, as well as Russia criticized Trump’s speech and reaffirmed their commitment to the JCPOA.

The US president also accused the Iranian authorities of not allowing nuclear inspectors to have full access to the Islamic Republic’s nuclear sites.

Shortly after Trump’s speech, IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano refuted Trump’s claim, saying, “So far, the IAEA has had access to all locations it needed to visit.”

Moreover, Amano reconfirmed that Iran is fully implementing its commitments under the nuclear deal.

Trump’s provocative comments came as Amano asserted that “Iran is subject to the world’s most robust nuclear verification regime.”

Iran protests Trump’s remarks at UN

Meanwhile, Iran’s Ambassador to the United Nations Gholamali Khoshroo (pictured below) sent a statement to UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres to protest Washington’s long-term animosity, interventionism, and destabilizing approach against the Iranian nation since the victory of the Islamic Revolution in 1979.

The statement pointed to US support for terrorist plots and coup attempts as well as Washington’s support for the former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussain during Baghdad’s imposed war on Iran in the 1980s, as other examples of the US animosity against the Iranian nation.

The statement pointed to the IRGC’s role in fighting Takfiri terrorist groups in Iraq and Syria and expressed regret over the US efforts to portray a wrong image of Iran’s actions against terrorism in the Middle East.

The Iranian UN mission pointed to trump’s claims about Iran’s non-compliance with the JCPOA, noting, “While the IAEA, as the only authority responsible to deal with the issue, has repeatedly confirmed Iran’s commitment to its obligations under the JCPOA, it once again proves that the US is not a trustworthy negotiating party.”

‘US will have to accept responsibility for rogue behavior’

The Iranian Foreign Ministry also reacted to Trump’s speech in a statement on Friday.

“The US President will have to bear full responsibility for all consequences of his rogue behavior,” it said.

The IRGC, it said, served an indispensible function in the area of national defense, while also maintaining an irrefutable role on the frontlines of combating terrorism in the region.

“Any action by the US administration or Congress against the IRGC will constitute a strategic mistake and will draw the indignation of the Iranian people and a strong and unified reciprocal reaction,” it said.

It said the nuclear deal was a valid international instrument and an outstanding achievement in contemporary diplomacy and could not be renegotiated or altered.

“Today, the United States is more isolated globally than ever before and the veracity of Iran’s policies and positions have become evident to the international community,” the statement said.

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