Iranian leader tells Japan's PM that Trump 'not worthy' of reply to message
Updated: 2019-06-14 10:31:52 KST
The meeting between Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Iran's Supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei was aimed at making peace between the U.S. and Iran, but it was overshadowed by Thursday's attacks on two tankers in the Gulf of Oman.
The attacks near the entrance to the Persian Gulf were reported early Thursday and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo wasted little time in saying Iran was responsible.
These attacks come amid escalating tensions between the U.S. and Iran due to tighter U.S. sanctions over renegotiating a nuclear deal.
The U.S. and Iran signed a 2015 nuclear accord after five or six years of negotiations, but that deal was swiftly abandoned by President Trump who claimed it was a "horrible one-sided deal".
Abe had discussed Iran with Trump in Tokyo last month and had brought a message from the U.S. leader, a message Khamenei said was not worthy of a reply.
He said President Trump was not ready for a honest negotiation.
"None of our problems would be solved be negotiating with America. Americans have been as hostile as they could towards us, and they continue to do so. No free nation will accept negotiations under pressure."
It was seen as crucial for Abe to ease tensions between the two countries as Japan had imported most of its oil from Iran until last month, when Washington said countries importing Iranian oil could face sanctions.
Khamenei said Japan should show a firm stance if it wants to expand its ties with Iran.
Hong Yoo, Arirang News.