Unity, consensus is solution against terrorism: Iranian President

Marcus Newton
May 25, 2017

Rouhani, the face of Tehran's deal with six major powers in 2015 to curb Iran's nuclear programme in return for the lifting of sanctions, said the US administration lacked knowledge about the Middle East.

The U.S. stance against Iran is "deceptive and destructive" and attempts to undermine the sovereignty of the regional states besides supporting Israel, Qasemi said.

Worldwide sanctions on Iran in response to its nuclear program had indeed driven its economy into crisis earlier this decade.

He also expressed Iran's preparedness to cooperate with France at all levels in the fight against terrorism and in settling the crisis that has gripped Syria for more than six years.

Rouhani made a point to stress that Trump's visit came amid Iran's presidential election, saying that such elections "are not in their (Saudis') dictionary".

"The gathering in Saudi Arabia was just a show with no practical or political value of any kind", Rouhani said.

As reported by the BBC, Rouhani was quick to dismiss the criticism and said it was actually Iran and its allies that were fighting terrorists.

Rouhani, 69, won a landslide victory in Friday's presidential election, according to official results.

To them, the Saudi trip was a litmus test of whether Trump would live up to his campaign promise to frame his Middle Eastern policy as a clash of Christian and Muslim civilizations. "They should have polling stations in place for the people and let the rulers not be on a hereditary basis".

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Clerics, who are based in Saudi Arabia and who enjoy a Riyadh government approval to work, freely preach Wahhabism, a violent strand of "ideology" that declares people of other faiths "infidels" - a practice known as "Takfir" in Arabic - and allows killing them.

Unlike Saudi Arabia, which occasionally holds elections for municipal councils, Iran regularly holds elections for president, parliament and other posts.

Indeed, rather than vote for either candidate, many Iranians boycotted the sham elections.

Opinion polls had favoured Mr. Rouhani, because Mr. Raisi, though close to the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, was considered a relative newcomer to politics. But it is by no means the only country with such a record; Saudi Arabia, Iran's bitter Sunni rival, is among nations also at fault.

As President Donald Trump tells it, Iran would be a collapsed state by now if only the Obama administration had refused the 2015 deal that eased economic sanctions in return for a freeze on Iranian nuclear development. It is a view United States leader Donald Trump does not seem to share in his country's dealings with the Shiite Muslim nation, confrontation appearing to be his preferred approach. In Israel on Monday, he warned of "the threat posed by Iran" through the possibility of it acquiring nuclear weapons and its support of militant groups.

Rouhani also said that stability could not be achieved in the Middle East without his country's help.

He wished for the boost in relations between Iran and Singapore during President Rouhani's new tenure. The Trump administration in February sanctioned more than two dozen people and companies in retaliation for a ballistic missile test, warning it had put the Islamic Republic "on notice".

"The United States' economic situation is a far cry from the picture painted of it in Western media, and the U.S. government's bankruptcy is practically undeniable", he said.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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