Iran’s president on Sunday warned President Donald Trump against scrapping the 2015 nuclear treaty negotiated by Trump’s predecessor.
“If America leaves the nuclear deal, this will entail historic regret for it,” President Hassan Rouhani said, according to the BBC.
Trump, a long-time critic of the deal, has renewed his criticism of it in the weeks leading up to the May 12 deadline when Trump must decide to either keep the deal in place or allow sanctions to again be levied against Iran.
Rouhani said Iran is ready to respond to Trump.
“Orders have been issued to our atomic energy organization … and to the economic sector to confront America’s plots against our country,” he said in a nationally televised speech, the Washington Examiner reported.
“We have plans to resist any decision by Trump on the nuclear accord,” Rouhani said, according to the Jerusalem Post.
“America is making a mistake if it leaves the nuclear accord,” he said.
“We are not worried about America’s cruel decisions … We are prepared for all scenarios and no change will occur in our lives next week,” Rouhani also said, according to Politico. “If we can get what we want from a deal without America, then Iran will continue to remain committed to the deal. What Iran wants is our interests to be guaranteed by its non-American signatories. … In that case, getting rid of America’s mischievous presence will be fine for Iran.”
“If they want to make sure that we are not after a nuclear bomb, we have said repeatedly that we are not and we will not be,” he said. “But if they want to weaken Iran and limit its influence whether in the region or globally, Iran will fiercely resist.”
Trump has objected to the fact that the deal limits Iran’s nuclear weapons program but allows it to build ballistic missiles it can use to threaten its Middle East neighbors. Rouhani on Sunday said Iran will not set limits on its missile program.
“We will not negotiate with anyone about our weapons and defenses, and we will make and store as many weapons, facilities and missiles as we need,” Rouhani said.
On Saturday, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani spoke to a group of Iranians opposed to the current regime and said Trump will not cave in to Iran.
“We have a president who is tough,” Giuliani said, according to The Washington Post. “We have a president who is as committed to regime change as we are.”
Confronting Iran, he added, is “more important than an Israeli-Palestinian deal.”
European leaders have urged Trump to continue the agreement. On Monday, British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson called for Trump to continue the deal and went on “Fox & Friends” to outline his position that the deal is flawed but cannot be summarily scrapped, the BBC reported.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who recently released material showing Iran lied about its nuclear program in 2015, said Sunday that the issue of facing Iran is not whether it must be fought, but when the confrontation takes place.
“We are determined to block Iran’s aggression against us even if this means a struggle. Better now than later,” he said.
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