05 May 2019 - 00:22
News ID: 444695
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has called for "unity and resistance" in the country in the face of US sanctions targeting Iran in what he described as a “war on hope”.

RNA - "Our war today is the war on hope. They want to break our hope, and we have to break their hope" of defeating Iran, said Rouhani in a live televised speech on Saturday.

The president said that US sanctions on Iran sought to sow discord in the country and weaken national unity.

"America will only let go of this game when it realizes it cannot achieve anything. We have no way but to resist and unite," he said.

Rouhani explained that the US sought to weaken Iran’s independence and sovereignty by targeting the country’s economy.

“America is trying to decrease our oil and non oil-related income. We have to counter this scheme and specifically the bid to stop Iran’s oil exports by stepping up production and exportation of Iranian products, along with storing and selling petrochemical products,” he said.

The president also said the US seeks to specifically weaken the Iranian currency in order to influence the prices of consumer goods in the country.

“We have to increase our hard currency income and cut our currency expenditures,” Rouhani added.

The president also hailed Iran’s growing independence in addressing its own economic needs, pointing that Iran used to once import key products such as wheat and diesel fuel, which it is now exporting.

Rouhani said the US unilaterally left a 2015 nuclear deal with Iran and imposed sanctions on the country because it couldn’t tolerate an independent and sovereign Iran which is strong and influential in the region and on the international stage.

On Tuesday, Rouhani played down Washington’s plan to cut Iran’s oil sales to zero, saying Tehran has its own ways of selling oil and will keep up its exports despite US pressure.

The US announced last month that it would not renew waivers that allowed Tehran’s eight largest customers to purchase its oil. The exemptions expired on May 1.

Rouhani on Saturday said the US sanctions are violating international law and compromising the rights of other states.

“When the Americans claim that they want to cut Iran’s oil sales to zero, it means that they are threatening the clients of Iran’s oil,” he said.

"People are not happy. China is not happy, Turkey is not happy, Russia is not happy. France is not happy. US allies are not happy that this is happening and they say that they will find ways of resisting it," Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said earlier this week. 

According to Press TV, China and Turkey have both decried Washington’s measures, warning that the decision could negatively affect the entire region.

Last week, China slammed the US sanctions, saying the country's dealings with Tehran were in accordance with international law, "reasonable and legitimate".

Earlier this week, India’s external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj accosted her US counterpart Mike Pompeo, saying immediate arrangements for alternative supplies to replace Iranian oil were "not possible.”

South Korea and Japan have also sought negotiations with the US, calling on Washington to backtrack on its decision.


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