No war, no negotiations with the U.S., says Khamenei

Iranian Supreme Leader blames ‘internal’ factors for present economic crisis
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Monday that there would be neither war nor negotiations with the United States, and that the country’s problems were the result of government mismanagement more than renewed sanctions.
Ayatollah Khamenei’s comments add to the pressure on President Hassan Rouhani following a collapse in the currency and widespread protests over high prices and corruption. They also appeared to rule out any hope of fresh talks with Washington, which U.S. President Donald Trump had proposed after walking out of the landmark 2015 nuclear deal and reimposing sanctions. “Beside sanctions, they are talking about war and negotiations… let me say a few words to the people: THERE WILL BE NO WAR, NOR WILL WE NEGOTIATE WITH THE U.S.,” Ayatollah Khamenei said via his official Twitter account in English.
The comments mirrored recent criticism of Mr. Rouhani’s economic management from senior members of the clergy and the Revolutionary Guards — particularly over the collapse of the rial, which has lost around half its value since April. A fortnight ago, Guards commander Mohammad Ali Jafari told Mr. Rouhani to take “revolutionary actions to control prices and prevent the enormous increase in the price of foreign currency and gold,” in an open letter published by the conservative Tasnim news agency.
The judiciary said on Sunday that it had arrested 67 people under a sweeping corruption crackdown and prevented 100 government employees from leaving the country. Ayatollah Khamenei’s tweets followed a speech in Tehran, in which he described Mr. Trump’s offer of talks as “a dangerous game” and his administration as a “bullying, fraudulent regime”. “Even if we ever — impossible as it is — negotiated with the U.S., it would never ever be with the current U.S. administration,” he added.
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