Rouhani to US: Who are you?

President Rouhani, Iran. Photo: Wikimedia Commons
President Rouhani, Iran. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Just hours after the U.S. Secretary Mike Pompeo warned Iran of the “strongest sanction in the history,” Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has hit back.

The U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo laid out a series of tough demands for a new nuclear deal with Iran.

Following the U.S. demands, Iranian President said the era of the U.S. making the decision for the rest of the world was over. Mr. Rouhani added: “Countries are independent … We will continue our path with the support of our nation.”

President Rouhani added: “Who are you to decide for Iran and the world?”

Meanwhile, the Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif accused the U.S. of a “regression to old habits.”

The Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif said on Twitter: “US diplomacy sham is merely a regression to old habits: imprisoned by delusions & failed policies—dictated by corrupt Special Interest—it repeats the same wrong choices and will thus reap the same ill rewards. Iran, meanwhile, is working with partners for post-US JCPOA solutions.”

The Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, however, has welcomed the U.S. Secretary of State’s comments.

He said Mike Pompeo’s demands were “the only policy that could ultimately guarantee the security of the Middle East.”

The Israeli Prime Minister added: “We call on the entire international community to join this American position.”

The United Arab Emirates’ minister of state for foreign affairs Anwar Gargash has also welcomed the U.S. move.

Mr. Gargash said: “Uniting efforts is the correct path for Iran to realize the futility of its incursions and expansionism … The Pompeo strategy requires wisdom and a change of the Iranian compass.”

Europe Reacts

The European Union has reacted to the U.S. warning to Iran. The EU Foreign Policy chief Federica Mogherini said: “Secretary Pompeo’s speech has not demonstrated how walking away from the JCPOA has made or will make the region safer from the threat of nuclear proliferation or how it puts us in a better position to influence Iran’s conduct in areas outside the scope of JCPOA.”

Mogherini added: “The normalization of trade and economic relations with Iran constitutes an essential part of the agreement, which should be upheld by the international community.”

She vowed that the EU “is and will remain committed to the continued full and effective implementation of the JCPOA as long as Iran abides by all its nuclear-related commitments, as it is doing so far.”

The European Union Foreign Policy chief warned that “There is no alternative to the JCPOA.”

Following the U.S. Secretary Mike Pompeo’s comments, the British Foreign Minister Boris Johnson accused the U.S. of pursuing ‘jumbo negotiations’.

Mr. Johnson added: “The advantage of the JCPOA was that it had a very clear objective. It protected the world from an Iranian nuclear bomb, and in return, it gave the Iranians some recognizable economic benefits. That was at the core of it. The Americans have walked away from that.”

Mr. Johnson vowed to continue with JCPOA: “We’ll certainly be discussing it with friends and colleagues today, how to take it forward.”

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