Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said his country would not stop its ballistic missile program, which President Trump and other Iran hawks believe is in violation of the nuclear deal.
Rouhani said in a speech to Parliament the missile program does not violate any international laws or the nuclear agreement struck between the U.S. and several other countries that is meant to keep Iran from building a nuclear bomb.
"Understand that we have been building missiles, and will continue to do so and this does not contradict any of international laws and it is not in conflict with Resolution 2231,” he said. “We will continue to defend our national interests and security with all our might, and the enemies should know that violation of any agreement will be detrimental to them, and the Islamic Republic of Iran will give them a decisive answer.”
Trump made the decision earlier this month to decertify Iran’s compliance with the nuclear agreement over the objections of some of his top military advisers.
Rouhani said that decision shows a lack of good faith negotiation by the U.S.
"The administration of a country that abandons international commitments of the previous administration is not reliable,” he said. “Today, the Americans are sending messages of readiness for negotiation to some East Asian countries; are they crazy to negotiate with you? You are explicitly violating your previous agreements and neglecting a U.N. Security Council-approved agreement.”
Ultimately, the U.S. is to blame for tension in the region, Rouhani added.
"Iran has fulfilled its obligations in the nuclear issue, but they say that why Iran, in terms of defensive and military, is powerful and why the countries of the region respect Iran; Iran's popularity in the region is because the United States has done nothing but foster terrorism and disagreement in the region,” he said.
"It is your problem. You have undermined security in Iraq and the stability and security of Afghanistan with your presence in the region; by bringing the terrorists to the region, you have undermined the security of Syria and Lebanon."