Zarif announces resignation via social media; Pompeo: We’ll see if it sticks. Either way, he and Hassan Rouhani are just front men for a corrupt religious mafia.
Iran’s Foreign Minister announced his resignation on Monday night.
Mohammad Javad Zarif took to Instagram to announce his sudden resignation, offering an apology to the Iranian people with no explanation or reasons for leaving. A spokesman for Iran’s Foreign Ministry, Abbas Mousavi, confirmed his leaving of office on Tuesday. Zarif was in office since 2013 and was the main negotiator for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA, nuclear deal).
United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo responded to Zarif’s announcement, taking to Twitter stating, “We note Zarif’s resignation. We’ll see if it sticks. Either way, he and [President] Hassan Rouhani are just front men for a corrupt religious mafia. We know [Sayyid Ali Hosseini] Khamenei makes all final decisions. Our policy is unchanged- the regime must behave like a normal country and respect its people.”
Prime Minister Netanyahu also took to Twitter Tuesday morning, stating “Zarif is gone. Thank goodness! As long as I am here, Iran will never acquire nuclear weapons.”
Iran’s parliament is set to debate his resignation on Tuesday.
On May 8, 2018, the Trump Administration withdrew from the JCPOA with world powers. It placed its first round of stringent sanctions on the Islamic Republic in August. The sanctions include restrictions on purchasing US dollars, trade on gold and precious metals, and the sale and trade of graphite and metals. The second round of sanctions were placed in November of 2018, targeting Iran’s exports and oil industries and financial sector.
Iran continues to develop and test its ballistic missile program despite its violation of international law and the nuclear agreement, mainly UN Security Council Resolution 2231 and the nuclear deal. Under the resolution, Iran is forbidden to produce, create or launch ballistic missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads.
This year alone, Iran failed to launch two satellites into space and confirmed it successfully tested its latest long-range cruise missile, the Hoveizeh. The missile is capable of reaching 1,350 kilometers and was tested as part of celebrations marking the 1979 Islamic Revolution. This week, Iran successfully tested a cruise missile at sea during its Velayat-97 naval exercise in the Strait of Hormuz. The cruise missile was launched from the Ghadir-class Iranian navy submarine.
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