Rouhani: New US Bans Expose Lie about Dialog with Iran
By Staff, Agencies
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said the fresh American sanctions targeting the country’s senior officials prove that Washington is lying about seeking to hold talks with Tehran.
Speaking on Tuesday, Rouhani raised questions about the logic behind US President Donald Trump’s executive order imposing bans on Leader of the Islamic Revolution His Eminence Imam Sayyed Ali Khamenei, his office and eight senior commanders of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps [IRGC].
Trump said the new “hard-hitting” sanctions will deny access to “key financial resources and support” for the Leader, his office and those “closely affiliated” with him.
US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin also said that Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif would also face sanctions “later this week.”
Rouhani also mocked a US decision to “seize assets of” Imam Khamenei as part the sanctions order, saying the Imam only owns “a Hosseiniyeh [Shia place of worship] and a simple house.
“Iran’s Leader is not like those of other countries, who have billions in an account abroad so you can sanction it, seize it or block it,” said Rouhani. “To sanction him for what? Not to travel to America?”
He added that the new sanctions — which will also target Zarif — prove the US was “lying” about the offer of talks with Tehran, which the White House has repeatedly put forwards over the past months in parallel with its pressure campaign and stepped-up military moves against the Islamic Republic.
“You [Americans] call for negotiations. If you are telling the truth, why are you simultaneously seeking to sanction our foreign minister, too? It is obvious that you are lying,” Rouhani said the Iranian president.