Iran: Pompeo, US are ‘prisoners of their past’

Iran: Pompeo, US are ‘prisoners of their past’
© Getty Images

Iranian officials on Wednesday pushed back on Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoOvernight Defense: Pentagon confirms North Korea weapons test | Air Force Academy no longer allowing transgender students to enroll | Trump officials clash over arms control report What must the leaders of Russia, China, North Korea be thinking? The Hill's 12:30 Report: Inside the Mueller report MORE’s pledge to implement harsh sanctions on Tehran, calling the Trump administration “prisoners of their past.” 

Reuters reported that Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Pompeo and other officials are “prisoners of their wrong illusions, prisoners of their past and have been taken hostage by corrupt pressure groups.”

A senior Iranian military official reportedly argued the U.S. “does not have the courage for military confrontation ... with Iran.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Instead, the official said, the U.S. is attempting to put economic and mental pressures on Tehran. 

Pompeo on Monday outlined the Trump administration’s approach to Iran following the president’s decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal. 

Pompeo vowed to levy the “strongest sanctions in history” on Tehran unless it abandons its nuclear program and halts what the U.S. has criticized as destabilizing activity in the Middle East.

“The sting of sanctions will be painful if the regime does not change course from the unacceptable and unproductive path it has chosen to one that rejoins the league of nations,” Pompeo said.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpGrassroots America shows the people support Donald Trump Trump speaks to rebel Libyan general attacking Tripoli Dem lawmaker: Mueller report shows 'substantial body of evidence' on obstruction MORE pulled the U.S. out of the Iran nuclear deal earlier this month, despite pleas from European allies to remain in the pact.

European leaders have vowed to uphold the agreement, which offers Iran sanctions relief in exchange for Tehran abandoning its nuclear program.