After a period of reduced tensions between Washington and Tehran following the Nuclear Deal signed during the Obama administration, Iran and the U.S. are once again exchanging accusations and threats.
A high ranking commander for Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards has warned the United States gainst designating the group as a terrorist organization or imposing new sanctions against Tehran.
“Counting the Revolutionary Guards the same as terrorist groups and applying similar sanctions to the Revolutionary Guards is a big risk for America and its bases and forces deployed in the region,” Armed Forces Chief of Staff Major General Mohammad Baqeri said on Monday, according to Sepah News, an official news site of the Guards.
The comments from Iran were a reaction to reports in February this year that the Trump administration was considering a proposal that could lead to the Revolutionary Guards being designated as a terrorist organization.
A new problem for the already troubled U.S.-Iran relations came after the U.S. Senate voted in June to impose new sanctions on Iran over its ballistic missile program. High ranking Iranian officials accused the U.S. of violating the Nuclear Deal signed in 2015.
During his visit to Saudi Arabia – an arch enemy of Iran – Trump repeated the accusations against Iran, saying that Tehran was undermining stability in the region. Trump repeatedly called the Iran Nuclear Agreement a ‘bad deal’.
Others have expressed concern over the heightened tensions between the U.S. and Iran, but the Nuclear Agreement has held, despite harsh criticism from Trump.
Iran Defense Minister Gen. Hossein Dehqan criticized remarks made by US Defense Secretary James Mattis in an interview last week, in which he said that better relations with Iran would be difficult to achieve under the current regime.
“Until the Iranian people can get rid of this theocracy, these guys who think they can tell the people even which candidates they get a choice of. It’s going to be very, very difficult,” Mattis told The Islander.
“Instead of deciding for other nations, the U.S. defense secretary and the country’s ruling body had better care about the resolution of their own internal problems and examine the underlying causes that, most probably and in the not too distant future, will both wipe out the current U.S. government, and bring more serious challenges for the country’s political system,” said Dehqan on Tuesday, according to Tasnim News, a state-affiliated outlet.