Tehran: Iranian President Hassan Rouhani vowed on Wednesday that Iran will “take any opportunity” to lift sanctions on Tehran after President Donald Trump is defeated by his Democratic rival Joe Biden.
Although the outgoing Trump declared Iran’s number one enemy and sought to isolate it on a global scale, President-elect Biden proposed to provide Iran with a “credible path back to diplomacy.”
“Our aim is to lift the pressure of sanctions from the shoulders of our people,” Rouhani said in televised remarks during a weekly cabinet meeting.
“Wherever this favourable opportunity arises we will act on our responsibilities. No one should miss any opportunity.”
“National security and national interests are not factional and partisan issues,” Rouhani added, after conservatives blasted his reformist and moderate coalition for its “over-excitement” for re-engagement with the Islamic republic’s nemesis.
After Trump unilaterally withdrew the United States from the landmark Iran nuclear agreement in 2018 and reimposed it, and then strengthened brutal sanctions, decades of tension between Tehran and Washington escalated.
These actions undermined the agreement, Rouhani’s signature foreign policy achievement, and promoted conservatives who believed that the United States could not be trusted.
These measures almost deprived Iran of important oil revenues and isolated its banks, triggered a severe recession and reduced the value of the rial.
Rouhani acknowledged Biden’s reconciliation remarks during the campaign, but he said Tehran was prepared to impose sanctions.
“They can choose a new path. And if they do not want to, it is their choice,” he told the cabinet.
He noted that his administration had devised its policies on the assumption Trump would stay in office.
Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said last week that the result of the US election would have “no effect” on Tehran’s policies towards Washington.