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Iran to US: Worry about your own domestic problems

Iranian officials have criticized US Secretary of Defense James Mattis for accusing Iran of causing instability in the region and saying regime change in Tehran will have to precede renewed ties with the United States.
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani attends a meeting during the Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) summit at the Foreign Ministry in Bangkok, Thailand, October 10, 2016. REUTERS/Athit Perawongmetha - RTSRK1N

Iranian officials have condemned US Secretary of Defense James Mattis for calling for regime change in Iran. During an interview with a high school newspaper, Mattis said US relations with Tehran will have to wait “until the Iranian people can get rid of this theocracy.” He also referred to Iran as “the most destabilizing influence in the Middle East.” The interview, published June 20, went viral July 10 and was picked up by a number of English-language media outlets.

Iranian officials responded on July 11. “Instead of making decisions for other countries, the secretary of defense and the American ruling party better think about their own domestic issues and review the causes of the collapse of its administration in the not too distant future,” said Iran’s Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan. He added that Mattis’ comments “ignore the strengths of other countries and feign not knowing the historical reality of the consequences of such comments.”

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