Another day, another anti-U.S. threat from Tehran. Iran’s foreign minister warned on Monday that America “cannot expect to stay safe” in any economic war against the Islamic republic.
Mohammad Javad Zarif offered a series of anti-U.S. ultimatums over the ongoing tensions gripping the Persian Gulf, just 24-hours after a different threat against America was made by an Iran general. He said U.S. Navy forces now gathered in the Persian Gulf region will be hit with “unimaginable reciprocal blows” if any attack is made on Iran, as Breitbart News reported.
“Mr. Trump himself has announced that the U.S. has launched an economic war against Iran,” Zarif said. “The only solution for reducing tensions in this region is stopping that economic war.”
Zarif’s hardline stance went public on the day Germany’s top diplomat Heiko Maas arrived seeking to defuse regional tensions.
German Foreign Minister Maas insisted his country and other European nations want to find a way to salvage the abandoned JCPOA nuclear deal, which saw Iran limit its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions.
Zarif’s sharp tone likely comes from Iran’s growing frustration with Europe, as well as the ever-tightening American sanctions targeting the country. Iran’s national currency, the rial, is currently trading at nearly 130,000 to $1. It had been 32,000 to the dollar at the time of the 2015 deal.
Zarif touched on that economic disparity Sunday when he said it was the E.U.’s “duty” to help fund his country’s survival, or face consequences.
“Europeans are certainly in no position to criticise Iran, even about issues that have nothing to do with” the agreement, Zarif said in televised remarks to journalists.
“The Europeans … should normalize economic ties with Iran…We will halt our commitments or will take action in accordance with their measures,” he concluded without further clarification.
Foreign ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said Iran would consider negotiating with the U.S. if it halts “economic terrorism” against the Iranian people.
“We will think about the rhetoric and words when they are accompanied with actions and change of attitude. The best example would be a decrease in pain and suffering of the Iranian people caused by the illegal and targeted pressure by the US government against the Iranian nation,” Mousavi said.
AP contributed to this report