Senior cleric: EU unreliable in defying US anti-Iran measures

FNA – Tehran’s provisional Friday Prayers leader Hojjatoleslam Kazzem Seddiq cautioned senior Iranian officials not to be deceived by the European Union’s claims about defying the sanctions re-imposed by Washington against the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Addressing a large and fervent congregation of the people in Tehran on Friday, Hojjatoleslam Seddiqi said, “While the US animosity against Iran is evident, the Europeans are also practicing in the deception scenario targeting the country’s senior officials today.”

The European officials are not different from the Americans, and at the times of difficulty, they will pull “the rug from under our feet”.

“We should be careful and try to resolve our internal problems by relying on our own capabilities and obeying the instructions of Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei,” he added.

In relevant remarks earlier in April, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif underlined that the Islamic Republic has never invested any hope on the Europeans, saying that Tehran will reconsider its commitment to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) if the EU fails to take practical measures.

“Europeans considered JCPOA as an achievement from the very beginning, but they probably were not strong enough to stand by it and confront the unilateral sanctions re-imposed by the US,” Zarif said while responding to a question on Ayatollah Khamenei’s remarks who said that the “EU has left the JCPOA in practice”.

The Iranian foreign minister said that the Europeans made some attempts, but as Supreme Leader said it was not enough and even in some cases these attempts indicated their unpreparedness to pay for what they claimed it had strategic importance for them.

Zarif reiterated that foreign ministry will pursue Europe’s measures as well as cautioning them to comply with their commitments.

US President Donald Trump has been pursuing a “maximum pressure” campaign on Iran by using economic sanctions to choke the country’s income sources.

The US president withdrew his country from the multilateral Iran nuclear agreement on May 8, 2018.

In November 2018, the Trump administration announced the re-imposition of the “toughest” sanctions ever against Iran’s banking and energy sectors with the aim of cutting off the country’s oil sales and crucial exports.

The first round of American sanctions took effect in August, targeting Iran’s access to the US dollar, metals trading, coal, industrial software, and auto sector.

In February 2019, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that the Iranian nation would stand firm in the face of an “economic” and “psychological” war being waged by the United States against the Islamic Republic.

“Washington is targeting the Iranian nation with an economic, propaganda and psychological war,” Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said addressing a cabinet meeting in Tehran.

President Rouhani’s remarks came after Zarif said all US plots against the Islamic Republic have failed thanks to the nation’s steadfastness in the face of Washington’s pressure tactics that have always proved to have reverse outcomes for the US.

“It is necessary for all those friends who are pursuing Iran’s foreign policy to realize that we owe everything to these people. Our attitude towards security is based on domestic development and progress, and the more they exert pressure on us, the more we will rely on the nation,” Zarif added.