image Photo: Reuters

Khamenei: Iran does not trust US

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei declared that the United States lacks credibility and reiterated that the only way his nation will resume compliance with its nuclear obligations is after all sanctions are lifted.

Referring to the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action agreement between Iran and world powers, Khamenei said in speech on state TV: “We trusted America at the time of (former U.S. President Barack) Obama and fulfilled our commitments. But they didn’t. The Americans said on paper that sanctions will be lifted, but they didn’t lift sanctions in practice.”

“Their promises have no credibility for us,” said Iran’s Supreme Leader, who has the final say in all matters of state.

Former US President Donald Trump withdrew from the JCPOA in 2018 over allegations that it was not strong enough to prevent Iran from pursuing its nuclear ambitions, and re-imposed harsh sanctions on the Islamic Republic. Iran retaliated by openly breaching the accord in a step-by-step response.

Current President Joe Biden has indicated willingness to revive the nuclear deal on condition that Iran first resume compliance with its terms.

“The Americans must lift all sanctions. We will verify it and if sanctions are … really cancelled, we will return to our obligations without any problems,” Khamenei insisted, adding, “We have a lot of patience and we are not in a hurry.”

The US and Iran remain locked in a stand-off over which of the sides will take the first move.

In remarks addressed to current Iranian officials who may assume power after the country’s presidential election in June, Khamenei advised they prepare for a worst-case scenario in which the punitive economic measures will not be removed in the near future.

Meanwhile in related developments, it has been revealed that Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) may be plotting to attack a US military base near Washington.

The Associated Press cited two senior American intelligence officials as saying that the National Security Agency intercepted IRGC communications in January during which operatives were heard discussing the perpetration of “USS Cole-style attacks” on the Fort McNair military base, as well as against the Vice Chief of Staff of the US Army Gen. Joseph M. Martin.

17 American sailors were killed in the October 2000 suicide attack by the al Qaeda terror group on the USS Cole Navy destroyer as it was refueling in the Yemeni port of Aden.