Animosity between Washington and Tehran – bitter foes since Iran’s 1979 revolution – has intensified since U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew from an international nuclear deal with Tehran last May and reimposed sanctions lifted under the accord.
“The struggle between Iran and America is currently at a maximum. America has employed all its power against us,” Rouhani was quoted as saying in a cabinet meeting by the state broadcaster IRIB.
“The U.S. pressures on firms and banks to halt business with Iran is one hundred percent a terrorist act,” he said.
Trump has reimposed the sanctions with the aim of slashing Iranian oil sales and choking its economy in order to curb its ballistic missile program and its activities in the Middle East, especially in the conflicts in Syria and Yemen.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif accused the United States of hypocrisy for trying to wreck Iran’s nuclear program while seeking to sell nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia, Tehran’s regional rival.
“Neither human rights nor the nuclear program are the real concern of the U.S. First a dismembered journalist; now illicit sale of nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia fully expose #USHypocrisy,” Zarif said in a tweet.
He was referring to the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, which triggered international revulusion. His body has not been found.
The CIA has said Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman likely ordered the killing, which Riyadh denies. Trump has stood by the prince, saying weapons sales to Saudi Arabia are an important source of U.S. jobs.
Read more: Reuters
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