Iran’s Parliament (Majlis) speaker says United States House Speaker Paul Ryan may be trying to invite hassle for US President-elect Donald Trump by speaking against a multi-lateral nuclear agreement with the Islamic Republic and thereby risking Tehran’s reaction.
Speaking on Tuesday, Ali Larijani, the Iranian Parliament speaker, recounted the numerous statements verifying Iran’s commitment to the nuclear deal, including by American officials, and said Ryan’s hostile attitude toward the deal in spite of all such verification may be a sign that he harbors ulterior motives.
Larijani reminded that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the United Nations (UN), the European Union (EU), as well as various high-level US officials had on dozens of occasions verified Iran’s commitment to the deal.
“One should ask the speaker of the US House of Representatives whether so many remarks confirming Iran’s implementation of its commitments aren’t enough?” Larijani said.
“Are you unaware of this many comments confirming Iran’s compliance? That would be regrettable, and seems unlikely,” he added, addressing Ryan. “[But,] if you are making such untrue comments [about Iran] with knowledge of all the verification, then one should look into your motives.”
Larijani then said that Ryan, a former rival to Trump in the presidential race, may be seeking to invite trouble for the now-president-elect.
“Perhaps, Mr. Ryan — who used profanities to describe Trump during the recent election in the US — is seeking to cause such conditions as to put the new US president in serious trouble from the start, because Iran will bring the US back to its senses with countermeasures,” Larijani said, referring to the potential solemn steps that Iran would take in case the Trump administration moved to violate or scrap the deal unilaterally.
Known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the deal was struck in July 2015 between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries, namely the US, Britain, Russia, France, China, plus Germany.
It introduced certain restrictions on Iran’s nuclear activities in exchange for the lifting of all nuclear-related sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
Ryan has previously accused Iran of trying to obtain nuclear weapons by seizing on what he claims is the latitude it has been offered as a result of the deal. He has also claimed that the outgoing administration of President Barack Obama has put the Islamic Republic on the path to obtaining atomic weapons by investing in the diplomacy that helped bring the agreement about.
Iran has on numerous occasions made it clear that it does not seek such weapons. The Islamic Republic agreed to the JCPOA in part to make that case.
Nevertheless, Trump, a business millionaire for whom the US presidency will be his first elected office, remains likely to harm the deal. During the campaign for the presidency, he threatened he would “tear up” the agreement; but, he has made no comments on matters relating to Iran since November 8, when he actually won the election.