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Khamenei: Iran won’t negotiate with West over regional presence

Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei [file photo]
Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei [file photo]

Iran will not negotiate with the West over its presence in the Middle East, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said.

“European countries come [to Tehran] and say we want to negotiate with Iran over its presence in the region. It is none of your business. It is our region. Why are you here?” Khamenei was quoted as saying by his official website.

Read: ‘We cannot remain in a deal that has no benefit for us’, says Iran

Khamenei said Iran would only negotiate on that issue with other states in the region.

“We will negotiate with America when we want to be present in America,” Reuters reported him adding.

US President Donald Trump has threatened to pull out of the nuclear deal unless three European signatories help “fix” the accord by forcing Iran to limit its sway in the Middle East and rein in its missile programme.

Cartoon of President Trump ripping Iran's Nuclear deal [Twitter]

Cartoon of President Trump ripping Iran’s Nuclear deal [Twitter]

French President Emmanuel Macron has criticised the programme and raised the possibility of new sanctions.

Tehran supports Syria’s President Bashar Al-Assad in the government’s war against opposition forces, including groups backed by the West, and is an ally of Israel’s enemy Hezbollah in Lebanon.

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