Iran's Rouhani says negotiations with sanctions 'makes no sense'

Iran's Rouhani says negotiations with sanctions 'makes no sense'
Iran rejected US calls for negotiations while the country imposes crippling sanctions.
1 min read
06 August, 2018
Iran prepares for crippling sanctions (Getty)

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said Monday that Washington's call for new nuclear negotiations at the same time the US reimposes crippling sanctions "makes no sense".

"They want to launch psychological warfare against the Iranian nation and create divisions among the people," he said in a televised interview.

"Negotiations with sanctions doesn't make sense. They are imposing sanctions on Iranian children, patients and the nation," the president said.

Rouhani referred to fears that essential supplies such as medicines would be affected when sanctions return on Tuesday.

He said Iran had "always welcomed negotiations" but that Washington would first have to demonstrate it can be trusted.

"If you're an enemy and you stab the other person with a knife and then you say you want negotiations, then the first thing you have to do is remove the knife."

"How do they show they are trustworthy? By returning to the JCPOA," he said, using the technical name for the 2015 nuclear deal. 

US President Donald Trump withdrew from the landmark agreement in May, and the US is set to reimpose sanctions in two phases - the first on Tuesday and the second on November 5.