0740 GMT December 19, 2018
“We will not yield to this pressure, which is part of the psychological war launched against Iran,” Rouhani said in a speech in the city of Khoy in West Azarbaijan Province, broadcast live on state television.
“They have failed to stop our oil exports. We will keep exporting it ... Your regional policies have failed and you blame Iran for that failure, from Afghanistan to Yemen and Syria,” he added, Reuters reported.
The president said America’s failures were a result of resistance by all regional nations, and added that Iran had prevented the US from getting the Daesh terrorist group to establish dominion over the region.
“We know you’re angry! [But] correct your mistakes! You cannot cut Iran’s oil exports,” the president said.
Rouhani said Washington lacked the necessary international support for its sanctions, and noted that it had granted temporary waivers to eight major buyers of Iranian oil.
“America is isolated now. Iran is supported by many countries. Except for the Zionist regime [Israel] and some countries in the region, no other country backs America’s pressure on Iran,” he said.
The US has unilaterally withdrawn from a multilateral nuclear deal with Iran, imposing sanctions on the country, including on its oil sales, and declaring that it would bring the country’s crude exports to “zero.” But the US has been forced to issue waivers to Iran’s major oil clients to prevent a huge spike in oil prices, according to Brian Hook, the US special representative for Iran.
“We had to give a handful of waivers to about eight countries because we did not want oil to go to 90-100 dollars per barrel,” Hook conceded in an interview with the Israeli i24news.
The European Union, France, Germany, Britain, Russia and China, participants with the United States in the 2015 deal that lifted sanctions on Iran in exchange for curbs on its nuclear program, have been trying to find ways to circumvent the US limitations.
In particular, the EU has been trying to establish a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) for non-dollar trade with Iran.
The SPV was conceived as a clearing house that could be used to help match Iranian oil and gas exports against purchases of EU goods, circumventing the US sanctions, which are based on the global use of the dollar for oil trade.
President Rouhani said it was the first time that America was making a decision to act against a certain nation and the entire world was resisting that decision.
In restoring the so-called primary sanctions against Iran and the “secondary sanctions” against Iran’s partners, the administration of US President Donald Trump has been hoping to get the other parties to the nuclear deal with Iran to likewise scrap the deal, only to see them close ranks in defending the agreement and work harder to sustain it.
President Rouhani also said Iran would further enhance its relations with its neighbors and that attempts to mar those relations would fail.
The Iranian president inaugurates several civil development projects, including a major railway, and medical programs in West Azarbaijan Province.