Middle East/North Africa

Iran: US sanctions are ‘economic terrorism’

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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Tuesday slammed U.S. sanctions saying they amounted to “economic terrorism” and “economic war” while speaking at the UN General Assembly. 

“Unlawful unilateral sanctions in themselves constitute a form of economic terrorism and a breach of the ‘Right to Development,’ ” Rouhani said. “The economic war that the United States has initiated under the rubric of new sanctions not only targets the Iranian people but also entails harmful repercussions for the people of other countries, and that war has caused a disruption in the state of global trade.”

{mosads}President Trump, who took aim at Iran in an earlier speech to the assembly Tuesday, reestablished the sanctions on Iran after he pulled the U.S. after the nuclear pact it reached with Iran and five other world powers under President Obama in 2015.

The sanctions will be put back in place in early November.

Rouhani slammed that decision, saying, “We are pleased that the international community did not acquiesce to the US government’s unilateral and illegal withdrawal from the JCPOA … If you dislike the JCPOA because it is the legacy of your domestic political rivals, then we invite you to come back to the Security Council resolution. We invite you to remain in the international institutions. Do not engage in imposing sanctions.”

Despite the hardships facing the Iranian economy, which have led to sporadic protests, Rouhani declared that Iran would persevere.

“The Iranian people have demonstrated their unwavering resilience during the past forty years despite the difficulties and constraints caused by sanctions, and have shown that they can overcome this difficult phase as well. The multi-millennial history of our country demonstrates that Iran and Iranians have never broken in the face of a storm of events—not even been bowed,” he said

“I state here, in clear, unambiguous terms, that the United States policy vis-à-vis the Islamic Republic of Iran has been wrong from the beginning, and its approach of resisting the wishes of the Iranian people as manifested in numerous elections is doomed to failure,” Rouhani added.

Trump has employed harsh rhetoric toward Iran, but has also expressed openness to renegotiating a deal with with the nation’s leaders, tweeting in August, “Iran, and it’s economy, is going very bad, and fast! I will meet, or not meet, it doesn’t matter – it is up to them!”

However, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khameini poured cold water on the prospect, citing recent U.S. policies.

“Negotiations with former U.S. officials, who at least saved some face, bore such results! With current brazen U.S. officials—who have unsheathed their swords against Iranians—what negotiations can we have? Thus no negotiations with any U.S. official at any level will be held,” he tweeted last month.

Tags Donald Trump Iran Trump speech UN General Assembly

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