Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Monday sharply criticized what he described as US military threats, after it was reported that American officials said a recent nuclear deal provides intelligence for possible future military attacks.
Rouhani said that the international climate following last month’s nuclear agreement was conducive to international “confidence-building,” but that discussion of military attacks harm the positive environment. Obama administration officials had reportedly told lawmakers that intelligence obtained by nuclear inspections would be useful for a possible future military strike.
“Such humorous words, slogans and improper jokes damage the trend [toward] confidence-building,” the semi-official Fars News Agency quoted Rouhani as saying.
“The way the agreement is implemented, attitudes and remarks should be in such a way that they convince public opinion that these developments [surrounding the nuclear deal] are useful,” he added.
Rouhani also confirmed Iran’s commitment to not producing nuclear weapons, calling it “our firm decision.”
The Obama administration reportedly told US politicians that passing the nuclear deal is the best way to ensure that a military option remains possible and that nuclear inspectors would obtain intelligence that could help in future military attacks, Politico reported Monday.
Although the US is not to participate in the International Atomic Energy Agency inspections, it will have access to detailed descriptions about the nuclear program, which Iran must provide.
White House press secretary Josh Earnest said last month that “the military option would be enhanced” by the deal, and that possible US and Israeli military actions “would be significantly informed… based on the knowledge that has been gained in the intervening years through this inspections regime.”
Iran complained to the IAEA about Earnest’s statements, accusing the US of trying to sabotage the deal and cautioned against efforts to obtain “confidential information,” Politico reported.
In July, prior to the nuclear agreement, an Iranian newspaper affiliated with Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei warned that the White House would be “destroyed in under 10 minutes” were Iran’s nuclear facilities to come under attack.
Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.