Teheran threatens response to sanctions
TEHERAN, Iran — The country said on Wednesday that it will stand up to the United States and retaliate for any new sanctions that Washington imposes on the Islamic republic.
President Hassan Rouhani’s remarks came a day after the Donald Trump administration announced new, non-nuclear sanctions while at the same time warning Teheran that it would face consequences for breaching “the spirit” of the nuclear deal with world powers.
Washington slapped sanctions on Tuesday on 18 entities and individuals linked to Iran’s ballistic missile program and other non-nuclear activities.
Washington says Iran’s ballistic missile launches are threats to US interests.
On Wednesday, Beijing called for mutual trust and responsibility from all sides to safeguard and carry out the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.
“Effective international cooperation relies on necessary mutual trust by all sides,” said Lu Kang, a Foreign Ministry spokesman.
If Washington, under any pretext, imposes new sanctions against Iran, “we will stand up to the United States”, Rouhani said, adding that the “great nation of Iran will have an appropriate answer” and the Iranian Parliament will also act.
He did not elaborate. His speech, at a Cabinet meeting, was broadcast on state TV.
Rouhani, a political moderate who secured a resounding re-election in May, has been increasingly outspoken against the US, calling relations with Washington “a curvy road” even as he touts the nuclear accord.
The Trump administration on Monday confirmed that Iran had met its obligations under the nuclear deal, but warned it would face consequences for breaching “the spirit” of the accord, a reference
Effective international cooperation relies on necessary mutual trust by all sides.” Lu Kang,
to Iran’s continued pursuit of a ballistic missile program.
Rouhani speculated that such statements seek to dissuade Iran from continuing to comply with the nuclear deal. The International Atomic Energy Agency has verified that Iran has lived up to its nuclear commitments.
“This plot will never succeed,” he added. “We will always remain loyal to our international commitments.”
‘Mean and pointless’
Iran’s Foreign Ministry condemned the latest sanctions on Tuesday, calling them “mean and pointless”, and said it will retaliate. Iran in April and May imposed reciprocal sanctions on dozens of US companies and individuals, alleging they support terrorism and repression against people in the region such as the Palestinians.
Later on Wednesday, General Mohammad Ali Jafari, head of Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guard, warned the US against imposing sanctions on the paramilitary group.
“If the US intends to pursue sanctions on the Guard, it should first disassemble its military bases within 1,000 kilometers,” Jafari was quoted as saying by state TV, apparently referring to the range of Iranian missiles.