Rouhani wants criminal cases against US officials over sanctions

Al Monitor – President Hassan Rouhani’s rise to the highest elected position in the Islamic Republic in 2013 was mostly centered on his campaign promise to reduce tensions with Western countries through a comprehensive nuclear deal that would remove international sanctions against Iran. However, the nuclear deal Iran signed in 2015 was quickly scrapped by a new US administration, diminishing Rouhani’s promises of economic prosperity. As a result, the Rouhani administration and others who domestically supported the nuclear deal have been left scrambling, either moving the goal posts or attempting to diffuse the blame.

While the US sanctions have been reimposed and investment from Western companies never materialized, Rouhani has been touting other achievements of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). During a speech to government officials in the southern port city of Bushehr, Rouhani spoke about the significance of Chapter VII sanctions on Iran under the UN Charter being removed due to the nuclear accord. “Sixteen years ago they occupied Iraq and before the occupation they took Iraq to Chapter VII of the UN Security Council, and today the people and government of Iraq are feeling the consequences of that,” Rouhani said. He added, “We have to know the value of our diplomats … because a great and historical task was accomplished.”

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