March 31 (UPI) — Iranian President Hassan Rouhani accused U.S. President Joe Biden Wednesday of carrying out similar policies of former President Donald Trump and has shown “no serious efforts” in rejoining the landmark 2015 nuclear deal.
Rouhani said in a Cabinet speech that remarks Biden has made criticizing Trump’s Iranian policies and his withdrawal from the multinational Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action in 2018 has not resulted in any immediate changes in U.S. policy.
Biden has said multiple times that he intends to rejoin the accord, which thaws sanctions against Iran in exchange for measures that prevent Tehran from developing nuclear weapons.
“Do you agree that Trump was a terrorist? If you don’t, then all your talk is invalid,” Rouhani said in his speech Wednesday. “If you do, then you shouldn’t continue his action for one more second.”
Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif similarly criticized Biden’s administration on Tuesday, and even compared him to Trump.
“It’s sadly ironic that the [U.S. State Department] is now calling on Iran to abide by the very deal the Trump administration abandoned,” Zarif tweeted.
“Your [administration] follows Trump’s footsteps while trying to use his unlawful sanctions as ‘leverage.’ Nasty habits die hard. Time to kick this one.”
Also Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron discussed the nuclear deal during a conference call, in which they favored preserving the deal and bringing Iran back into compliance.
France issued its own statement after the meeting, saying it will take action on the issue. Those countries, the United States, Britain and China were all part of the original deal that set limits on Iran’s nuclear program.
Trump withdrew from the pact three years ago and dismissed it as a “bad deal,” after which Tehran took successive steps to distance itself from the agreement — including increasing uranium enrichment.
Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken have said they intend to rejoin the deal, but haven’t indicated when they plan to do so. Tehran said earlier this year that the United States will have a “very small window” of time to return.