(September 25, 2019 / JNS) In his speech on Wednesday at the annual U.N. General Assembly in New York, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani accused the United States of committing “merciless economic terrorism.”
He said that Iran wouldn’t negotiate regarding its nuclear program until the United States lifts its sanctions against the regime.
“Our response to talks under pressure is no,” said Rouhani, adding, “If you wish more, if you require more, you should give and pay more,” without being specific.
Tensions between the United States and Iran have intensified since the former withdrew in May 2018 from the 2015 nuclear deal, reimposing sanctions lifted under it, in addition to enacting new financial penalties.
The United States has sought a new deal that addresses not only Iran’s nuclear program, but also its regional and missile programs.
Rouhani said that the Persian Gulf is “on the edge of collapse, as a single blunder can fuel a big fire.”
“We shall not tolerate the provocative intervention of foreigners,” he said. “We shall respond decisively and strongly to any sort of transgression to and violation of our security and territorial integrity.”
Rouhani’s speech came a day after U.S. President Donald Trump called on the international community to take action against the Iranian threat.
He also said that U.S. sanctions on Iran would continue, despite reports in recent weeks that included the White House reportedly considering allowing France to give $15 million to Iran and Trump previously repeatedly saying he was willing to meet with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.
Additionally, the president condemned Iran’s “violent and unprovoked aggression” in attacking two Saudi Aramco facilities on Sept. 14. He defended the United States sanctioning Iran’s Central Bank last week.
“All nations have a duty to act. No responsible government should subsidize Iran’s blood lust,” said Trump. “As long as Iran’s menacing behavior continues, sanctions will not be lifted. They will be tightened.”
On Wednesday, the United States sanctioned five individuals and six companies on Wednesday for violating U.S. sanctions on Iran.
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