Israel mocks Iran's leader as salesman bullish on nukes

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Israel derided Iran's new president as an expert salesman who is bullish on nuclear proliferation in a bitingly sarcastic tweet sent on Wednesday.

It came from the Israeli Embassy in Washington and poses the question of what President Hassan Rouhani's LinkedIn page might look like.

The tweet came out just as the United States and Iran are showing signs of a thaw in long-antagonistic relations and a day after their presidents made hopeful sounding remarks at the United Nations General Assembly in New York on the Iranian nuclear standoff.

The spoof of the Iranian president's LinkedIn page has him describing himself thusly: "I'm a career politician, expert public relations professional, leading international salesman and longtime advocate of nuclear proliferation."

Western countries suspect that Iran's nuclear programme is designed to build a nuclear weapon, but Iran says it is for civilian purposes.

The mock LinkedIn page goes on to quote Mr Rouhani as saying of himself: "Since my election as President of Iran in 2013, I developed and have executed an unprecedented PR campaign for the government of Iran."

"Through a series of statements, tweets, op-eds and smiles, I have rebranded the human rights-suppressing, Ayatollah-led regime as moderate and a source of hope among the international community. In my role, I represent and am the public facing figure of Supreme leader Ayatollah Khameini," it added.

Further up on the page, in a section on Mr Rouhani's "skills and expertise", these are said to include international sales, deceptive trade practices, nuclear weapons, military justice, illusion, weapons of mass destruction and ballistics.

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