Pres. Rouhani to CNN:

Iran ready for swift riposte if Trump kills nuclear deal

News ID: 4091158 -
TEHRAN, Sep. 19 (MNA) – In an exclusive interview with CNN in New York, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani promised a swift response if US President Donald Trump scraps the nuclear deal.

Speaking in an exclusive interview with CNN in New York Monday night, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani went on to add, “exiting such an agreement would carry a high cost for the United States of America, and I do not believe Americans would be willing to pay such a high cost for something that will be useless for them."

Rouhani said such an action by the Trump administration "will yield no results for the United States but at the same time it will generally decrease international trust placed in Washington."

Rouhani said Iran was ready to respond to the possibility of Trump walking away from the agreement; "given that Mr. Trump's actions and reactions and policies are somewhat unpredictable, we have thought long and hard about our reactions," he added.

He said any riposte from Iran would come "quite swiftly" and "probably within a week," adding that "if the US wants to increase the tensions it will see the reaction from Iran."

Rouhani went on to warn of the diplomatic precedent that would be set by pulling out of the Iran agreement, especially with regard to North Korea; "I think what the Iranian experience shows is a good experience that can be replicated elsewhere and executed elsewhere," he said.

"But keep in mind please that if the US wishes to withdraw from the JCPOA, why would the North Koreans waste their time in order to sit around the table of dialogue with them, because they would think perhaps after years of talks and a potential agreement, the next US administration could step over or pull out of the agreement,” Rouhani said.

On the Syrian crisis, he said "our actions were successful and today we are witnessing the final stages of the defeat of ISIL."

Calling for eventual elections in Syria, the Iranian President said "the future of Syria will be determined by talks and ultimately the opposition must reach an agreement with the government and the will of people would be the ballot box that should ultimately determine what happens.”

About Iran's position regarding the current humanitarian crisis of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar, Rouhani said that Myanmar should be condemned and that aid should be forwarded to Bangladesh, where hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees have fled in recent weeks.

He also said he shared concerns that ISIL and al Qaeda terrorists in Syria and Iraq could move across to Bangladesh and Myanmar to exploit the Rohingya crisis.

About foreign nationals and dual citizens detained in Iranian jails, President Rouhani stressed that the judiciary in Iran is an independent body and the government cannot intervene in judicial procedures.

“What is important to me as the president is that judicial procedures would be carried out in a just and legal way,” he said.

Rouhani went on to add, “on the other hand, if there is concern for the US about the detained foreign nationals in Iranian jails, there are also a lot of Iranian people who are jailed in the US or being prosecuted, whom we think are completely innocent. Therefore, if we want to talk about human rights and those who are in jail, we should see the story from both sides.”

MS

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