Middle East/North Africa

Iran’s supreme leader says ‘mafia-like’ US regime created Ukraine crisis

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Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Tuesday that the “mafia-like regime” in the U.S. created the current crisis in Ukraine, Reuters reports.

Khamenei said the Russian invasion should be stopped, despite Iran’s alliance with Moscow in the Syrian civil war and the two countries’ trade ties.

However, Khamenei blamed the situation on the U.S. rather than Russia, which attacked its smaller neighbor after months of open preparation and condemnation from the rest of Europe.

“In my view, Ukraine is a victim of the crises concocted by the United States,” he said in a speech.

“The U.S. regime creates crises, lives off of crises and feeds on various crises in the world. Ukraine is another victim of this policy,” he added.

The comments came amid talks in Vienna between Iran and Western nations, including the U.S, about reinstating the 2015 nuclear deal.

Iran wants questions about uranium traces found at undeclared sites in the country to be dropped by Western powers, an official told Reuters, creating some controversy in the talks despite general progress.

Iranian diplomats have heightened tensions around the talks recently, saying that the discussions have reached a “now or never” stage.

Khamenei’s rhetoric Tuesday clashed with his country’s recent negotiations in Vienna, Reuters reported.

“States which depend on the support of the U.S. and Western powers need to know they cannot trust such countries,” Khamenei claimed.

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