Iran opens missile production line, rejects Trump's threat

Mike Pompeo is the US’ current Secretary of State

Critics have been quick to attack Trump, with Persian-American politician Shireen Ghorbani accusing him of exacerbating tensions in the Middle East and giving "hardliners within Iran fuel for their anti-American propaganda".

President Trump warned Iran Sunday night that it better not continue threatening the United States or the country "will suffer consequences".

"We are no longer a country that will stand for your demented words of violence & death".

It appears that Mr Trump's threat to Tehran was in response to a speech delivered by... Rouhani issued the statement to his country's diplomats, according to Iranian state media.

In early May, Mr Trump lambasted the pact during his withdrawal speech and described it as a "horrible one-sided deal" that should have "never, ever" been signed.

Washington initially planned to shut Iran out of global oil markets completely after Trump abandoned the deal that limited Iran's nuclear ambitions, demanding all other countries stop buying Iranian crude by November.

General Gholamhossein Gheybparvar, a senior Iran Revolutionary Guards officer and commander of the Basij paramilitary forces, responded to US President Donald Trump's tweet warning Iran to "never ever threaten" the United States Monday morning.

He said despite poor treatment by their leaders, "the proud Iranian people are not staying silent about their governments many abuses", Pompeo said. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised the USA president's "strong stance" after years in which the Iranian "regime was pampered by world powers".

Despite some mixed messages from senior State Department officials in recent weeks, Pompeo made clear that pressure campaign includes dropping Iranian oil imports to "as close to zero as possible by November 4" when USA sanctions snap back into place.

President Trump's latest remarks are reminiscent of the "fire and fury" he threatened against the North Korean leader last summer.

Trump has long-promised to take a hard line against Iran.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has blasted Iran's religious leaders as "hypocritical holy men" whom he says are more interested in lining their pockets and spreading hardline views overseas than helping out their own cash-strapped citizens.

Trita Parsi, founder and president of the lobby group National Iranian American Council, said Pompeo's tough talk could fuel grievances, destabilise Iran and set Tehran and Washington on a collision course.

Iran's oil exports could fall by as much as two-thirds by the end of the year because of new USA sanctions, putting oil markets under huge strain amid supply outages elsewhere. Norths Foreign Ministry accused the United States of making "gangster-like" demands for its unilateral disarmament.

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