Published: Wed, June 26, 2019
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

Iran’s President: The White House Is ‘Afflicted by Mental Retardation’

Iran’s President: The White House Is ‘Afflicted by Mental Retardation’

The Iranian Foreign Ministry said Tuesday U.S. sanctions on Khamenei shut "the doors of diplomacy" between Tehran and Washington.

Rouhani also questioned the logic of blacklisting supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and said it showed that Washington is "confused".

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, responding to the sanctions in a Twitter post, said hawkish politicians close to Trump "despise diplomacy, and thirst for war".

"In some areas, overwhelming will mean obliteration".

He added that the sanctions against Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei were "outrageous and idiotic", especially as the 80-year-old Shiite cleric has no plans to ever travel to the US. According to Tehran, the UAV and P-8 Poseidon spy plane accompanying it had violated the country's border.

United States president Donald Trump enacted new sanctions on Monday targeting Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Iran denies it attacked the tankers and says the drone was in its airspace.

Last month, Iran scaled back some its commitments under the deal, including on the amount of low enriched uranium it is allowed to stockpile, after Mr Trump ended exemptions from USA secondary sanctions for countries still buying Iranian oil.

The fresh sanctions came days after Iran shot down a USA reconnaissance drone, which Tehran says violated its airspace while Washington maintains it was in global waters over the Strait of Hormuz, an important shipping route.

Mr Trump told reporters in the Oval Office that when the Iranians are ready to talk, they will contact him.

The latest sanctions are aimed at denying Iran's leadership access to financial resources, blocking them from using the USA financial system or having access to any assets in the United States.

The United States pulled out of a 2015 nuclear deal that world powers signed with Iran and has already applied crushing sanctions on the country's economy.

US sanctions on Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif are expected later this week. "Iran has kept the window of diplomacy open by reducing its commitments incrementally", he said.

His comments alongside his Israeli and Russian counterparts come after Iran slammed the Trump administration over new USA sanctions targeting its supreme leader.

Citing unspecified Iranian threats, the US has sent an aircraft carrier to the Middle East and deployed additional troops alongside the tens of thousands already there.

Russia's Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev acknowledged Israel's security concerns, but rejected the United States and Israel's attempts to isolate Iran.

Officials, however, confirmed to Fox News that the USA military did carry out a cyberattack against Iranian intelligence in response.

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton, speaking after the United States increased sanctions against Iranian officials, said Washington was still willing to talk to Iran.

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