Khamenei blames Rouhani for economic crisis in Iran

Donald Trump Germany trade war

"We have been in wars but the other side has always started the war. We need lower tariffs, more open markets and less protectionism worldwide", the minister told Bild am Sonntag, while responding to a question on Trump's new tariffs on Turkey and China.

"If by some force of circumstance there was a possibility for the Iranian government to speak directly with the American regime, we would never negotiate with the current USA government", Khamenei said.

That after Washington pulled out of a nuclear deal and then, last week, reimposed sanctions.

"America's withdrawal from the nuclear deal is a clear proof that America can not be trusted", state TV quoted Khamenei as telling a gathering attended by thousands of Iranians.

Washington this week reimposed sanctions on Iran's purchase of US dollars, its trade in gold and precious metals and its dealings with metals, coal and industrial-related software.

The Leader added as Imam Khomeini "banned talks with the US and I also ban it".

"We won't let Washington dictate us with whom we can do business and we therefore stick to the Vienna Nuclear Agreement so that Iran cannot build atomic weapons", Altmaier said. "I do not call it betrayal but a huge mistake in management", state TV quoted Khamenei as saying.

Khamenei, whose remarks on Monday come amid a sharp fall in the rial currency that has prompted angry protests, criticized the government of President Hassan Rouhani, a pragmatist cleric who championed the 2015 deal aimed at ending Iran's political and economic isolation.

Ayatollah Khamenei also said the current economic problems in the country mostly originate from "domestic issues, management styles and executive policy-making".

Iranian officials have blamed "enemies" for the fall of the rial - which lost half of its value in April ahead of the renewed USA sanctions. and a rapid rise in the price of gold coins.

Fearing further economic hardship, thousands of Iranians in recent weeks have protested against the slump in the rial, sharp rises in the prices of some food items and state corruption.

The central bank and the judiciary have blamed "enemies" for the fall of the currency and a rapid rise in the price of gold coins, and the judiciary has said more than 40 people including a former central bank deputy have been arrested on charges carrying the death penalty.

"It is not that the sanctions do not play a role; but a major part of the situation is the result of [government's own] actions", Khamenei said, according to Irna, as he was addressing thousands of Iranians in Tehran on Monday. The protests over the cost of living have often turned into anti-government rallies.

As if to drive the point home, on Monday Tehran also unveiled a new generation of its short-range ballistic missiles - defying United States demands to curb the weapons programme.

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