“The United States’ hostility toward us is perpetual and as Leader of the Islamic Revolution (Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei) has said, the Americans use any means to reach their objectives against us,” Tehran’s Provisional Friday Prayers Leader Ayatollah Mohammad Emami Kashani told the Tasnim News Agency.
He further pointed to recent remarks by Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on the issue, saying that as the top diplomat has said, the US measure is tantamount to “highway robbery” and the government should take any measures necessary to restore the Iranian nation’s rights and lodge a complaint to the UN against Washington.
The cleric went on to say that President Hassan Rouhani’s administration has adopted a good stance on the issue, expressing the hope that its efforts would yield good results soon.
Speaking at a cabinet meeting in Tehran on Wednesday, President Rouhani referred to the US Supreme Court ruling on seizure of Iran’s blocked assets as “a blatant robbery and a major legal scandal for the US”, saying the move is indicative of Washington’s continued hostilities toward the Iranian nation.
“They (the Americans) should be aware that the rights of the Iranian people cannot be violated and plundered,” he said, adding, “No thief can take pride in his theft and think what he has stolen belongs to him.”
Rouhani further made assurances that the Iranian nation will never retreat one iota from its rights and that his administration will spare no efforts to restore the rights of the people.
On April 20, the US Supreme Court upheld the Congress and President Barack Obama’s actions to hold Iran financially responsible for the 1983 bombing that killed 241 Marines at their barracks in the Lebanese capital, Beirut.
The ruling allows the families of the Marines and victims of other attacks that courts have linked to Iran to seize some $2 billion in assets held in New York’s Citibank, belonging to the Central Bank of Iran (CBI), which has been blocked under US sanctions.
In 2012, the US Congress passed a law that specifically directed the American bank to turn over the Iranian assets to victims’ families. Obama also entered the battle in an effort to force the payments on Iran.