Iran threatens to close Hormuz strait as U.S. squeezes oil exports

Islamic Republic News Agency,Iran President Hassan Rouhani,Eshaq Jahangiri

"If you think America is victorious, know that today Iran is victorious and Trump has been defeated", Rouhani said in comments reported by the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) news agency.

In his latest warning over USA sanctions, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned the United States that if Tehran isn't able to export oil then they will act to stop any country in the Gulf from doing the same.

"If one day they want to prevent the export of Iran's oil, then no oil will be exported from the Persian Gulf", he said. Sanctions on crude exports from the country were re-imposed early last month, but waivers were issued to the largest buyers of the country's oil.

Rouhani last threatened to close the Gulf in July when he warned the USA "should not play with the lion's tail".

"If someday, the United States decides to block Iran's oil [exports], no oil will be exported from the Persian Gulf", Rouhani said.

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"No hyperinflation, no massive unemployment will threaten us".

Washington has re-imposed its unilateral anti-Iran sanctions, including an oil embargo, after withdrawing from a landmark 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and major powers in May in defiance of global objections. "People should stop saying such things in the papers", he told the crowd.

He said the government would maintain subsidies on essential goods and increase public sector wages and pensions by 20 percent. "We will build an Iran, which is more powerful than ever before". Iran has repeatedly threatened to close the Strait of Hormuz to export oil if the United States moves forward with tougher sanctions.

Rouhani said the U.S. animosity towards Iran has drawn no backing except from the Tel Aviv regime and a few small states, adding that Washington has even failed to win support for such a policy at the United Nations and the International Court of Justice.

Following incendiary remarks by U.S. officials thrown at Tehran, Iran's deputy commander of the regular armed forces said that the military was "prepared" to protect Iranian oil tankers.

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