Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani has labelled Donald Trump a “rogue newcomer” in international politics, attacking the US leader’s “ignorant and absurd” rhetoric for suggesting the nuclear deal with Tehran could be ripped up.
During his address to the United Nations General Assembly, Mr Rouhani said that if the US decides to scrap the deal negotiated by the Obama administration, the nation would only demolish its own credibility.
“It will be a great pity if this agreement were to be destroyed by rogue newcomers to the world of politics,” Mr Rouhani said. “By violating its international commitments, the new US administration only destroys its own credibility and undermines international confidence in negotiating with it or accepting its word or promise.”
Mr Trump had used part of his own speech to the assembly on Tuesday to condemn Iran as “a corrupt dictatorship behind the false guise of a democracy”, saying that the country’s oil profits go toward funding terrorist groups, Yemen’s civil war and Bashar al-Assad’s government in Syria.
“We cannot let a murderous regime continue these destabilising activities while building dangerous missiles, and we cannot abide by an agreement if it provides cover for the eventual construction of a nuclear programme,” Mr Trump said. “The Iran Deal was one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into.”
For his part, Mr Rouhani said Iran desired to preserve its accord with six world powers – including the US, UK and France – under which Tehran agreed to restrict its nuclear program for at least a decade in return for the loosening of economic sanctions that crippled its economy.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran will not be the first country to violate the agreement,” Rouhani said, adding that Iran would respond “decisively and resolutely” to a violation by any party.
After Mr Rouhani’s speech, Mr Trump told reporters that he had decided about whether to rip up the agreement, but refused to say what that decision was.
Mr Trump’s criticism of the deal has put him at odds with other world leaders, including the UK’s Prime Minister Theresa May, who has called the agreement “vital”, and France’s President Emmanuel Macron. Mr Macon on Tuesday said the nuclear deal was “essential for peace”.
Mr Trump on Wednesday told reporters he has decided on whether to scrap the deal, but would not disclose his decision.
The US’s ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, had…