Rouhani: Trump's comments are 'hypocritical'

Iranian President dismisses Trump's comments, says they are hypocritical because the Americans themselves support terrorism.

Elad Benari ,

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Wednesday weighed in on the comments made by Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump, who urged a ban on Muslims entering the United States, saying the call was hypocritical.

Rouhani took aim at Trump, without mentioning his name, during a cabinet meeting, according to Reuters.

"Under the pretext of fighting terrorism, some people are proposing that Muslims should not be permitted to enter other countries. We regret such remarks about Muslims," he said in comments carried by Iranian state television.

"This is while they themselves are among the sponsors and supporters of terrorism ... and they are supporting terrorists,” charged Rouhani.

Trump caused an uproar with his comments, with White House press secretary Josh Earnest on Tuesday saying the proposal was "disqualifying".

"What he said is disqualifying," said Earnest. Noting on how other Republican candidates have been obligated to vow their support to any Republican candidate - including Trump - who gets the nomination, he added: "any Republican who's too fearful of the Republican base to admit it has no business serving as president either."

Trump was unapologetic on Tuesday, defending his comments on CNN and saying, "you're going to have many more World Trade Centers if you don't solve it (Muslim terror - ed.) - many, many more and probably beyond the World Trade Center."

France, Britain, Canada, the United Nations and Muslims in Asian countries and nearly all of Trump's Republican rivals have also denounced his comments as out of keeping with American democratic values, noted Reuters.

Rouhani’s claim that the United States supports “terrorism” is the latest example of remarks against the United States by Rouhani and other Iranian leaders.

Rouhani has personally presided over “Death to America” chants during rallies in Iran, as shown in a video released by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s office last Independence Day.

Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has also blasted the United States, which he calls the “Great Satan”.

The comments about the United States’ alleged support of terrorism are ironic, given Iran’s support for Hezbollah, which has carried out attacks not only against Israel, but also in other countries around the world.