Iran's Rouhani: World no longer accepts US deciding for them

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at a ceremony in Tehran, Iran, on May 21, 2018. PHOTO: IRANIAN PRESIDENTIAL OFFICE

TEHERAN (AFP) - Iran's President Hassan Rouhani dismissed threats made by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Monday (May 21), saying the rest of the world no longer accepts Washington making decisions on their behalf.

"Who are you to decide for Iran and the world?" Rouhani said in a statement carried by multiple Iranian news agencies.

"The world today does not accept that the United States decides for the world. Countries have their independence," he added.

It was a pointed response to Pompeo's speech earlier in the day, in which he threatened the "strongest sanctions in history" against Iran unless it capitulated to a series of 12 demands regarding its regional behaviour and missile programme.

But Rouhani dismissed the administration of President Donald Trump as a "move 15 years backwards to the era of Bush junior and a repeat of the same statements as 2003".

"The era of such statements has evolved and the Iranian people have heard these statements hundreds of times, and no longer pays attention," he added.

European leaders have strongly condemned the US move to abandon the 2015 nuclear deal and reimpose sanctions, seeing it as undermining regional security and a direct attack on their economic interests.

Russia and China - two other parties to the agreement - have also criticised the US move and vowed to maintain trade with Iran.

"The world does not accept the logic by which a gentleman who was head of the spy service... decides for others," said Rouhani, referring to Pompeo's recent job as head of the CIA.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.