Iran's nuclear deal with world powers will not open the Islamic Republic to political or economic influence from the United States and could still be blocked by either country, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Monday.The conservative cleric, Iran's highest authority, has refrained from making decisive statements on the nuclear deal reached last month, which must still be approved by the US Congress before taking effect."They thought this deal - and it is not clear if it will be passed in Iran or in America - will open up Iran to their influence," Khamenei was quoted on his website as saying at a meeting with members of the Islamic Radio and Television Union.
"We blocked this path and will definitely block it in the future. We won't allow American political, economic or cultural influence in Iran."Most analysts see the chance of Khamenei rejecting the deal as small after he gave President Hassan Rouhani the political cover to pursue talks. But he also holds a deep mistrust of the United States, which he still refers to as the 'Great Satan.'If the deal is implemented, international sanctions on Iran will be lifted, opening up a market of nearly 80 million people to foreign investment after years of isolation.The Ayatollah's comments come a day after a top adviser to the Supreme Leader said Iran and its allies must do all in their power to curb American influence in the Middle East. According to official Iranian media, Ali Akbar Velayati said that the "resistance axis" of Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and the Palestinian territories is "not only to fight against the dominance of foreigners in their countries" but also to roll back US hegemony.Velayati said that the Western powers are conspiring to divide Syria after "failing in its military aggression against Afghanistan and Iraq."“Syria is the golden ring of resistance against the Zionists,” he said.Despite the nuclear deal recently struck with the major powers, Iranian officials have continued to make statements that appear to give the impression that the regime is still intent on assuming a hostile posture toward the West.Just days after the agreement was struck, Khamenei tweeted a warning against any military action against Iran by what he called the "aggressive and criminal US."Appearing on Ayatollah Khamenei's official Twitter account, the social media post features a quote from the Islamic Republic's premier cleric reading "we welcome no war, nor do we initiate any war, but if any war happens he who will emerge the loser will be the aggressive and criminal US."Below the threat, a silhouette resembling US President Barack Obama can be seen holding a gun against his own head, as if to suggest that any sort of strike against Tehran would be a suicidal move for the American leader.
Iran deal in a nutshell