U.S. cornered at UN, Rouhani says

September 28, 2018

TEHRAN – Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Thursday that the U.S. achieved nothing at the UN General Assembly and UN Security Council’s meetings.

“When Mr. Trump in his speech talked about his two-year administration, all the participants laughed at him and the U.S. media said that the world leaders laughed at Mr. Trump and considered the issue a humiliation of the U.S. government,” Rouhani told reporters upon arrival at Mehrabad airport after concluding his visit to the UN summit in New York.

The U.S. was also isolated at the UN Security Council’s meeting, because the member states supported the 2015 nuclear deal.

U.S. President Donald Trump chaired the UN Security Council’s meeting on Wednesday and much of his speech was spent criticizing Iran. However, all the countries sitting on the council – permanent and temporary members - backed the nuclear agreement and condemned the U.S. pullout from the international deal backed by the UN Security Council resolution 2231.

“The meeting turned into a meeting to support the JCPOA and Trump was left alone which was a second isolation for the U.S.,” Rouhani remarked.

He added, “Today, the U.S. is in a historic political isolation.”

In a tweet immediately after Trump chaired the Security Council, Foreign Minister Zarif said the U.S. found itself “further isolated” as other countries criticized the U.S. action for violating the UN Security Council resolution confirming the nuclear agreement, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

“Once again, the U.S. abused the UNSC only to find itself further isolated in its violation of JCPOA and SC resolution 2231. When will it learn its lesson?” Zarif tweeted.

It is a ‘legal obligation’ for all countries to ignore U.S. sanctions

In a press conference in New York on Wednesday, Rouhani said it is a “legal obligation” for all countries to bypass U.S. sanctions against Iran.

“I think it would be a great source of pride for any country to trample American sanctions, because these American sanctions are illegal sanctions and violate a Security Council resolution. So, as a legal obligation, all the countries of the world should try to bring this unlawful U.S. move to failure,” Rouhani stated.

“So far we have stayed within the JCPOA and [honored] all the commitments we have made. And we will stay in the JCPOA so far as staying in the JCPOA meets our national interests. And whenever we notice our interests are not being met, procedures have been devised within the JCPOA itself and we will start with those very procedures.”

Regarding a recent joint statement by the remaining parties to the Iran nuclear deal, he said, “So this statement was a very good step forward regarding Iran’s cooperation with the five countries to save the JCPOA. But, yes, we expect much more than this. The expectations have been clearly discussed in our meetings with the other side, that is, the five countries. They are completely aware of our viewpoints. And they have promised us to push this process forward step by step.”

On prospect of de-escalation with the U.S., he said “If America goes back to the law we will not have any problem. Of course, there have been differences between Iran and America from the past, which have to be resolved gradually in their own turn.”

On John Bolton’s threats against any move against U.S. forces, the Iranian president said, “America is now there in Syria, against international rules. The Syrian government rejects and condemns this. So the presence of America in Syria is unlawful, and it does not concern us if it suffers damages or not. We do not intend to engage in war with American forces anywhere in the region. We do not want to attack U.S. forces. We do not want to escalate tension with America. None of these. But we ask America to act according to the law and to respect countries’ national sovereignty.”

NA/SP/PA

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