Never requested to meet with US president/Instead of speaking; honesty and seriousness needed/A meeting should happen when it really benefits both nations/No power, gov’t can stand against a nation

Speaking with CNN's Christiane Amanpour on Tuesday in New York, President Hassan Rouhani responded to President Trump’s tweet and said, “Instead of speaking; honesty and seriousness is needed. He has been pursuing a meeting for two years now. This meeting should happen at a time when it really benefits both nations and countries”.

Wed 26 - September 2018 - 19:54

"Not this year, nor last year. We have never made such a request for a meeting with the President of the United States," Rouhani told CNN.

He added, “Of course, Iran received eight requests from US officials for a meeting last year, and I did not think such talks would be appropriate; I don’t see it appropriate now either”.

Dr Rouhani went on to say, “What is important for us is that the two leaders must pursue common interests and take practical steps. If we follow this goal, it is appropriate, but playing with words will not get us to any solutions".

Answering the question of what brings Iran back to the negotiation table with the US, he referred to the US’ unilateral withdrawal from the nuclear deal and continued, “So, nobody has the right to exit a deal unilaterally without any reason, and nobody has the right to violate UNSC resolutions”.

“The United States’ government deviated on a path during the past few months and it must return from that deviated path to the point of departure, and there will be the point where we can talk about as to whether this agreement is being implemented well,” he continued.

Dr Rouhani also went on to say, “Until such time that the Iranian government rises from the will of the people in result of the ballot box, through which process their leadership and the representatives are chosen, that means that people are in charge. No power and government can face down a nation”.

Stating that until Iran’s interests are safeguarded in this agreement, we will stay in it, the President added, “But if we see that the remaining five countries don’t live up to their commitments, then there will be new conditions”.

“Of course this is true that sanctions will put pressure on the people; sanction means disrupting global trade and the Americans are working as hard as they can to disrupt our trade with other countries and companies,” Rouhani said.

Pointing out that US officials say contradictory things, the President continued, “While they are saying that they will put pressure on the people and make their lives harder, they also say that we love these people; this is a clear contradiction in the words and actions of the current US officials”.

On US and some European countries’ worries about Iran’s role in Syria and Yemen, he said, “We must consider the realities in Syria and Yemen; in Syria, who were killing the people and driving people out of their homes? We all agree that terrorist groups had displaced the people of Iraq and Syria from their homes”.

“Foreign media covered some of these crimes and all countries were apparently saying that they opposed terrorists and want to fight terrorism, but some were helping these terrorists and buying their oil,” President Rouhani continued.

He also said, “What we are doing in Iraq and Syria is to the benefit of peace and security in the region and the world, as well the people of Iraq and Syria”.

Responding to Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s case, Dr Rouhani added, “I don’t have details on this case. All prisoners must be freed and returned to their families, but it must be a path that travels both ways”.

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