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Iran's Khamenei accuses US of trying to stoke protests

作者:admin 2020-08-03

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has accused the United States of trying to stir anti-government protests by imposing sanctions that he said are aimed at bankrupting the country.

Iran's rulers have tried to prevent a revival of anti-government unrest that has shaken the country in recent years, which began with protests over economic hardship but turned political, with demonstrators demanding top officials step down. Authorities have said street protests will be dealt with "decisively".

"Their [The US] short-term goal was to make our people so fed up and tired that they would stand up against the (ruling) system," Khamenei said in a televised speech on Friday marking the Muslim religious holiday of Eid al-Adha.

"Their long-term aim is to bankrupt the country, the state, in other words to make the economy collapse."

In addition to the US sanctions, Iran's economy has been hit by a fall in oil prices, as well as the coronavirus crisis. Iran has one of the highest death tolls in the Middle East from the pandemic.

Negotiations ruled out

Relations between Tehran and Washington have deteriorated since 2018 when US President Donald Trump abandoned Iran's 2015 nuclear deal with six powers, under which Tehran agreed to curtail its nuclear programme in return for the lifting of most international sanctions.

The Trump administration has said it is willing to talk to Iran "with no preconditions", but that the US will continue its campaign of pressure against the nation.

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