Ayatollah: No Use Responding to 'Whoppers' of Trump
Iran's leader threatens to 'shred' nuclear pact if US withdraws
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 18, 2017 12:30 PM CDT
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei speaks at a meeting in Tehran, Iran, on Wednesday.   (Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP)
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(Newser) – If President Trump thinks the Iran nuclear deal should be scrapped, the ayatollah seems happy to oblige. "If the US tears up the deal, we will shred it," Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Tuesday in a speech to students, per Reuters. He was referring to President Trump's decision last week not to recertify the deal struck under the Obama administration. Trump's move doesn't mean the US is withdrawing—instead he essentially turned that decision over to Congress. In his own speech, Khamenei unleashed a torrent of criticism against Trump. "I don't want to waste our time to respond to the rants and whoppers of the foul-throated president of the United States," the Guardian quotes him as saying. (Translations differ slightly in various accounts.)

"Everyone should know that once again America will receive a slap in its mouth and will be defeated by the people of Iran." The AP's account has the ayatollah referring to the Trump administration as "mentally retarded." Other nations are part of the nuclear accord, but Khamenei suggested that a US withdrawal would effectively kill it. And he seemed to be urging other parties, especially in Europe, to stand up to the US. "European states stressed their backing for the deal and condemned Trump," he said, per the Hill. "We welcomed this, but it is not enough to ask Trump not to rip up the agreement. Europe needs to stand against practical measures (taken) by America." The next big move may be up to Congress, which has 60 days to decide whether to reimpose sanctions that were lifted by the agreement.

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