Hassan Rouhani says Iran will stand up to US after new sanctions announced


Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said his country will stand up to the US, a day after Washington slapped new sanctions on Tehran, and said the measures violated the 2015 nuclear accord.

"If Americans want to impose sanctions against us under any condition and pretext," Iran "will respond accordingly," Rouhani told the cabinet on Wednesday, according to a statement on the presidential website.

"We will not pass over US' violations of the [nuclear deal] and we will stand against them," he said.

The US said Tuesday that it was imposing sanctions on 18 individuals and entities over their suspected support for Iran's ballistic missile programme and other military-related activities.

The US State Department accused Iran of testing and developing ballistic missiles "in direct defiance" of a UN Security Council resolution.

US President Donald Trump has long criticized the landmark nuclear agreement reached in 2015 that was meant to constrain Tehran's ability to make nuclear weapons for at least 15 years and which was reached between Iran, the five permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany.

Rouhani pledged that Iran would stand by its international commitments, "although Americans are giving with one hand and taking away with the other."

He said that while on the one hand the US said Iran was complying with the agreement, on the other hand, the new sanctions are "not compatible with the letter and spirit of the [nuclear deal]."

On Monday, the Trump administration said Tehran had met the terms of the nuclear deal signed in 2015 but was "in default of the spirit" of it.

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