Wednesday September 20, 2017
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, addressing the U.N. General Assembly on Wednesday, sharply questioned President Trump’s authority to single-handedly scrap the landmark 2015 Iran nuclear accord, saying the pact “belongs to the international community in its entirety, and not only to one or two” governments.Trump told reporters on Wednesday he had made a decision about the pact, but did not disclose it.
“It would be a great pity if this agreement were to be destroyed by rogue newcomers to the world of politics,” the Iranian president said, an apparent reference to Trump’s repeated hints — including one delivered at the world body a day earlier — that he was poised to tear up the accord, which was negotiated between six world powers and Iran.
Rouhani, together with then-President Obama, was a chief architect of the accord.
The speech was laced with direct and indirect denunciations of Trump, who a day earlier had referred to Iran as a "rogue nation." Without mentioning Trump by name, the Iranian leader decried “ignorant, absurd and hateful rhetoric” delivered in the chamber a day earlier. He singled out “the new U.S. administration” in saying it would destroy its own credibility by abrogating international agreements.
The 2-year-old nuclear agreement, negotiated by the United States, the European Union and other partners, led to the lifting of most international sanctions against Iran in return for curbs on its nuclear program.
Rouhani, who won a second presidential term earlier this year, said Iran would not be the first to violate the agreement, but that it would take unspecified steps if others did so.
“We never threaten anyone, but we do not tolerate threats from anyone,” he said. “We believe in dialogue based on equal footing and mutual respect.”