Thu | Sep 20, 2018

Trump's speech sparks a new war of words between US, Iran

Published:Sunday | October 15, 2017 | 12:00 AM


United States President Donald Trump's refusal to certify the Iran nuclear deal has sparked a new war of words between the Islamic Republic and America, fuelling growing mistrust and a sense of nationalism among Iranians.

The speech has also served to unite Iranians across the political spectrum from Trump's declining to call the Persian Gulf, the waterway through which a third of all oil traded by sea passes, by its name, to undercutting those trying to change Iran's clerically overseen government from within.

That is also likely to strengthen the hand of hardliners within Iran, who long have insisted that the United States remains the same 'Great Satan' denounced in the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

"Under the deal, it was supposed to be that we get concessions, not that we give more concessions," the hard-line Kayhan newspaper raged.

Iranian officials and media outlets yesterday uniformly condemned Trump's comments that angrily accused Iran of violating the spirit of the 2015 accord and demanded Congress toughen the law governing US participation.

Trump said he was not ready to pull out of the deal but warned he would do so if it were not improved.

In a televised speech shortly after Trump made his announcement, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said his country would remain in the deal, but criticised Trump's words, referring to them as "cursing and futile accusations".