Rouhani: 'Rogue Zionist regime' shouldn't preach

Iranian President blasts U.S. and Israel, warns his country will respond decisively to any violation of the nuclear deal.

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Elad Benari, Canada,

Hassan Rouhani
Hassan Rouhani
Reuters

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Wednesday blasted the United States and Israel in his speech to the UN General Assembly, warning that his country will respond “decisively” to any violation of the nuclear deal it signed with the West in 2015.

“Centuries ago, Iran gave shelter to the Jews suffering the crack-downs of Babylonians, and the same nation is today supporting the oppressed people of Palestine,” Rouhani charged.

He attacked Israel for criticizing the nuclear deal, saying “It is reprehensible that the rogue Zionist regime, that threatens regional and global security with its nuclear arsenal and is not committed to any international instrument or safeguard, has the audacity to preach peaceful nations.”

“The Islamic Republic of Iran will not be the first country to violate the agreement, but it will respond decisively and resolutely to its violation by any party,” warned Rouhani.

“It will be a great pity if this agreement were to be destroyed by ‘rogue’ newcomers to the world of politics: the world will have lost a great opportunity,” he continued, in a reference to President Donald Trump’s comments against the deal.

“By violating its international commitments, the new U.S. administration only destroys its own credibility and undermines international confidence in negotiating with it, or accepting its word or promise,” said Rouhani.

“We in Iran,” he claimed, “strive to build peace and promote the human rights of peoples and nations. We never condone tyranny and we always defend the voiceless. We never threaten anyone, but we do not tolerate threats from anyone. Our discourse is one of dignity and respect, and we are unmoved by threats and intimidation. We believe in dialogue and negotiation based on equal footing and mutual respect.”

In his speech before the UN General Assembly on Tuesday, Trump called the nuclear deal "an embarrassment" to the U.S. and "one of worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into."

Trump also levelled harsh criticism at the Iranian regime, saying, "It is far past time for the nations of the world to confront another reckless regime, one that speaks openly of mass murder, vowing death to America, destruction to Israel, and ruin for many leaders and nations in this room. The Iranian government masks a corrupt dictatorship behind the false guise of democracy.”

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, in his own speech at the UN, urged the world to fix the nuclear deal or cancel it.

"Iran vows to destroy my country every day," he said. "Iran is conducting a campaign of conquest across the Middle East, and Iran is developing ballistic missiles to threaten the entire world."

"President Trump rightly called the nuclear deal with Iran 'an embarrassment.' I couldn't agree more,” added Netanyahu, who called on world powers to either "fix it or nix it."

Iran’s Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, on Tuesday blasted Trump’s remarks, calling them “shameless and ignorant” and claiming they showed Trump’s lack of knowledge about Tehran’s fight against terrorism.

In an interview with CNN on Monday, Rouhani warned that the United States will pay a "high cost" if Trump scraps the Iran nuclear deal.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Rosh Hashanah in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)