In 2023, Iranian officials blamed the United States and its allies for many of the world’s ills. In his U.N. speech, President Ebrahim Raisi declared that Western power was waning. “The world is changing and transitioning to an emerging international order, and this path is irreversible,” he told the opening session of the U.N. General Assembly in September. “The old liberal order, which served the interests of insatiable dominators and capitalists, has been pushed aside and, in a word, the project of Americanizing the world has failed,” Iran has sought to deepen ties with China, Russia and rising powers in Asia. “The old powers are declining. They are the past and we are the future,” he boasted.
Iran’s top leaders applauded Hamas for its multi-pronged attack on Israel on Oct. 7, 2023. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called the unprecedented operation “a devastating earthquake” and a “great calamity” for Israel, even though the Palestinian group committed murderous atrocities and hostage seizures of Israeli civilians from homes, streets and even a music festival in central and southern Israel. Iran has made no secret of its longstanding support for Hamas, which dates back to its formation in 1988. Through the Revolutionary Guards, Iran has provided arms, training, and funding for Hamas fighters and hosted its political leadership in Tehran. President Raisi called for unity among Muslim countries to hold Israel to account for 75 years of “repression and crimes” against the Palestinians. Iranian leaders warned that the conflict between Hamas and Israel could spread to other fronts if Israel did not halt its military campaign in Gaza.
Iranian leaders also accused Western powers of meddling in domestic affairs. They accused Western intelligence agencies of provoking three months of nationwide protests after the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in police custody in September 2022. The following are remarks by Iranian officials organized by topic in reverse chronological order.
On the U.S. and the West
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
In remarks on June 4: “This [revolution shattered a political structure consisting of a monarchy and replaced it with a democracy. This revolution removed a puppet system of governance that bowed to world powers replacing it with an independent system that relied on national dignity. This system of governance removed an anti-Islamic government from the picture, and it established and built an Islamic government in its place.”
“With a deep understanding of the divine verses, the Imam had deep trust and faith in the motives and actions of the people, including their votes.”
“The Imam (Khomeini) breathed life into the depressed body of the Palestinian nation.”
“Of course, the fronts have not changed and today, like yesterday, the front of arrogance, the front of the Zionists and the front of aggressive powers are lined up in front of the Iranian nation.”
“The honorable Imam’s transformations have stubborn, spiteful enemies who are criminals and aggressors. In order to deal with them, the Iranian nation must be equipped with the same soft skills that the magnanimous Imam possessed. They need to have faith and hope.”
“The global arrogance and Zionism’s enmity with the Iranian nation will not fade or disappear because of local retreats.”
“In many cases, our retreats caused them to come forward and become more aggressive. That is because their main goal is to force Iran to return to the era before the revolution, that is, the period when the nation was dependent on others and had no identity.”
“During the last few decades, in some administrations, there were individuals who believed in retreating and giving concessions. In one of these administrations, the same country we had retreated before, issued an indictment for our president. Or in another administration, which unfortunately helped the U.S., the Americans ended up labeling Iran as an axis of evil.”
“During the past few decades, stubborn and arrogant institutions did everything they could to weaken people’s faith and hope, and they made progress in a few cases, but in most cases, by the grace of God, they were overcome and defeated by the Iranian nation.”
“The comprehensive planning of these riots [in 2022] was carried out in the think tanks of Western countries. Its implementation was accompanied by extensive financial, arms and media support of Western security institutions, traitors and mercenaries who turned their backs on their country and agents of hostile policies against Iran.”
“They thought that the Islamic Republic was finished and that they could use the Iranian nation to achieve their goals, but once again, these fools made a mistake and failed to recognize the Iranian nation.”
“They try to create despair in young Iranians by pointing out the high costs of living and inflation.”
“This year's elections are very important. The enemy has already activated its [propaganda] artillery to destroy them, even though we are nine months away from the elections.”
President Ebrahim Raisi
In a CNN interview that aired on September 24: “With the Islamic revolution we gave a loud and clear announcement that we will not go under the hegemony of the West, of America. We wish to be an independent country. We wish to have relations with all countries but they sought only hegemony. What are conditions now in the region? In the situation brought about by the Americans in Syria, was Syria successful or America? Certainly Syria. In Afghanistan, were the people of Afghanistan successful or the United States of America? Certain the people of Afghanistan. In Iraq, were the Iraqis successful or the United States of America? Certain the Iraqis.
“Now where in the region has America been successful? You cannot see an example of their success anywhere in the region. The difference in the comparison between Iran, western countries and the Americans, Iran has been the one who has succeeded. Now, America, -- also, it is important to keep in mind, that they wanted for Iran to become isolated. That did not occur.
“Is the entire world comprised of three European countries and the United States of America? The world has almost 200 different independent countries. We have relations with a great many of them, most of them. Is today's world scenario showing you that American power is precipitating or that of Iran?
“We believe that it is certainly that of the United States of America. And Iran's position is being strengthened by the day.”
To the U.N. General Assembly on September 19: “We are in a decisive historical period. The world is changing and transitioning to an emerging international order, and this path is irreversible.
“The equation of Western domination for the world no longer works. The old liberal order, which served the interests of insatiable dominators and capitalists, has been pushed aside and, in a word, the project of Americanizing the world has failed.
“The nation of Iran is proud that, with the help of its glorious Islamic revolution, it has provided the greatest enlightenment in removing the mask from the faces of the rulers of the East and West, and together with other nations of West Asia, has played a decisive role in the failure of the domination system.
“Now that the resistance and awakening of the nations of the world has increased more than ever and emerging powers have emerged, it is hoped that a new and just order will rule the world.
“What is key to the new international order is to abandon global domination and replace it with regional orders and cooperation.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran supports maximum economic and political convergence within and between regions and is interested in interacting with the whole world based on justice.
“However, now that the independent countries of the world are taking steps towards greater cooperation and convergence, we are witnessing the efforts of some powers to ignite the fire of conflict in different regions. With a Cold War mentality, they seek to divide the world into blocs again. This movement is reactionary and detrimental to the security and well-being of nations.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran firmly believes that a new East and West division should not be allowed to form.
“Securing trade corridors, downgrading countries from allies to dependents, hindering the economic growth of independent countries, and creating proxy wars in Asia and Europe are part of this sinister chain.
“The irony of the story is that these measures are proposed in the name of defending democracy; But the whole world, including our nations in West Asia, have touched the true meaning of Western democracy and know that it is just a code name for coup, occupation and war.
“The task of the world with the project and school of liberal democracy is clear because they know that it is nothing but a velvet glove with a cast iron hand under it. Now, the school that wanted to be a model for the world has become a lesson and is nearing the end of its journey.”
“Humanity is entering a new orbit. The old powers are declining. They are the ‘past’ and we are the ‘future.’ I repeat that they are the ‘past’ and we are the ‘future.’”
In remarks on June 3: “Today, we see that the indicators of America's power and unilateralism are declining, and new and emerging powers such as regional organizations, especially in Asia, are forming.”
“Today we clearly see the status of the Zionist regime [Israel] as the blessed child of America in the region, in the past 70 years since the formation of this movement. The regime has never been as bad as it is today, and these are significant indicators and manifestations of the formation of the new world order.”
“The spirit of the eight-year resistance of the resistant and oppressed people of Yemen against the arrogant in their most difficult conditions is one of the teachings of the Islamic Revolution, and the Palestinian people who, before this, waited for negotiation tables and liberation organizations and agreements such as Camp David, Oslo and Sharm el-Sheikh, changed with resistance and standing, and today the initiative is in the hands of warriors in the field.”
“In those days, no one believed that great powers would collapse, but the former Soviet Union collapsed, and the power of the United States is also declining. On the other hand, those who claim power today acknowledge the authority of the Islamic Republic of Iran, and our power in the region is inevitable and undeniable, and no equation can be formed except with the role of Islamic Iran.”
“We have stated many times that we are ready to interact and cooperate with any country that wants to have relations with Iran, but we will stand against any country that wants to stand up against the Iranian people.”
“Today, resistance has become a prominent political word in the world, and the secret of resistance is that the way is not to surrender to the enemy, but to become strong against it, and a strong society resists conspiracies and seditions.”
“Sanctions are imposed to create slowness in the country, and the response to sanctions is the round-the-clock effort and activity of all servants in the Islamic system.”
“When the enemy saw that we are progressing despite all the sanctions and threats and admitted that the maximum pressure on the Iranian nation had failed shamefully, they hatched a new conspiracy [the 2022 protests].”
“Fifty-two billion dollars in trade of the Islamic Republic of Iran is a unique record achieved by the people. They thought they could stop us, but they saw that production was established and hundreds of factories were opened, and the country was creating jobs.”
In Nowruz remarks on March 21: “In everything they [Western powers] do, they seek to politically and economically dominate Iran and plunder it.”
“Which country and revolution do you know that has been able to resist the blows of the world's most powerful countries? The Iranian nation has stood firmly against a long chain of the enemy's schemes, including coup attempts, sanctions, and media assaults.”
“During recent unrest, the U.S. president and heads of states of certain European countries openly offered weapons, and financial and security support to rioters to at least weaken the Islamic Republic. But what happened was the opposite.”
“With regard to foreign relations, the West’s efforts to isolate Iran have failed.”
“Our relations with Asia became 100 percent stronger and we will continue to do so.”
“We haven't refused to have any relations with Europe. We are ready to work with any European country or government that does not blindly follow U.S. policies.”
“Some of the sanctioned countries put an end to their dependence on the U.S. dollar, and their situation got better. We know certain countries, which I won’t name, that have been heavily sanctioned by the West. Their link to SWIFT, which is a Western-led international mechanism, was cut. They then put aside the U.S. dollar and conducted transactions and imported and exported with national currencies, and their situation got better. We should do the same thing.”
“There is no military attack in hybrid warfare. But foreign propagandists and their followers in the country attack the political and religious beliefs of the people with temptation so that they undermine the nation’s will, sow despair among the youth, and make them disappointed about the future, work, and progress by fudging the facts.”
“In a hybrid warfare, the enemy uses the media and cultural, security, and economic elements as well as its influence to bring blockades against the nation, to cause despondency, and to cause people to ignore their own potential.”
“It’s been years that the enemy vociferously asserts that they want to bring the Islamic Republic to its knees. But the supreme leader says in response that 'You can’t do a damn thing.' This is not a repetition but endurance and insistence on the righteous thing as per order of God.”
“We categorically deny any involvement in the Ukraine war. And such a thing is not true at all.”
“The path and policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran toward the region is clear, and we know what we’re doing. But the Americans are confused and desperate because if they stay in the region, like in Afghanistan, they will face the increasing hatred of nations and will be forced to leave the region. And if they leave, they will lose their ambitions. This confusion is indicative of their obvious weakness.”
On Iran’s Nuclear Program
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
In a speech on June 11: “We have faced nuclear challenges for 20 years now. Why have the enemies created these challenges? Why do they keep insisting on this? Are we the only ones in the world working in the field of nuclear energy? Of course, they claim that they are afraid of nuclear weapons. They are lying. They know very well that we are not pursuing nuclear weapons. The U.S. intelligence community has stated on numerous occasions that Iran is not pursuing nuclear weapons. Just a few months ago, two of these people admitted that there are no signs that Iran is moving toward the construction of nuclear weapons. They are right.
“Of course, it is not that we are afraid of them or that this is because of them. We believe nuclear weapons are used for mass destruction. We are against mass destruction. It is contradictory to religion, and it is contradictory to Islam. And it doesn’t matter whether it is using atomic, chemical or any other possible type of weaponry.
“In the wars that were fought during the time of the Prophet, Imam Ali, and the early days of Islam, instructions were given to be careful not to block people’s access to water. At that time, it was a common practice to block the general public’s access to water. There wasn’t chemical warfare or things of that sort. Based on our Islamic principles, we do not want to pursue such weapons. Otherwise, if it weren’t for our belief, and we had wished to pursue these, they wouldn’t have been able to stop us in the same way that they haven’t been able to stop our nuclear development until now. And they will not be able to do so in the future. If we had wanted to build nuclear weapons, we would have done so. They know this. So, this excuse about nuclear weapons is a lie. They know that advancement in the nuclear industry is actually the key to making scientific progress in many fields in the country. They don’t want that to happen.”
“The existing nuclear industry’s infrastructure must not be changed. During these years, managers, officials, and those who are active in this industry have done important work and built important infrastructure. You may want to sign agreements in some areas. That’s not a problem. Make agreements, but infrastructure must not be changed. Do not harm them. They are the fruits of other people’s endeavors.”
“Another fact is the unreliability of the other parties and our opponents with regard to their promises. So far during these many years – now those of you who have more experience in the nuclear field know what I am referring to – here have been many [unfulfilled] promises in different sectors, made by both the governments that were on the other side of the negotiations and by the agency itself. They made promises and did not fulfill those promises. Many times, there were unfulfilled promises and mistrust. Therefore, one of the achievements of this challenge of 20 years is that we realized we cannot trust their promises or their words. These are important achievements. Realize that these are important. We were hurt in many places because of such misplaced trust. It is very important for a nation and the officials of a country to know and realize who to trust and who not to trust. This is very important. We have realized this. Over these 20 years, we have come to realize who is trustworthy and trustworthy and who isn’t trustworthy.”
President Ebrahim Raisi
In a CNN interview that aired on September 24:
Question: Iran is at the center of many controversies, but perhaps the most alarming is its nuclear progress. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley said earlier this year that Tehran could have fissile material for a bomb in less than two weeks and a nuclear weapon just a few months later. Last weekend the IAEA said Iran has decided to bar several of its inspectors… Would it be possible to get the IAEA inspectors to the point where they have enough people there who can actually inspect, or is your intention to make it impossible for the IAEA to function in Iran?
Raisi: From the very beginning our aim was to collaborate and cooperate with the IAEA, and they are fully aware of this, within the IAEA, that we have cooperated fully. And this cooperation takes place in two ways… One via installation of cameras that record in real time the activities that take place. Secondly are the inspectors who come there and oversee the nuclear activities in Iran. And in the time that has elapsed thus far, since the agreement, 15 different times the IAEA has said and certified that there are no digressions into any type of Iran's nuclear activity and that it remains purely for civilian and peaceful purposes. And we have announced, time and time again, that the use of nuclear weapons, the use of weapons of mass destruction in general do not have a place. Why? Because we don't believe in it nor do we have a need for it.
However, what we believe--given in particular the fatwa issued by his Eminence, the Supreme Leader, because these are weapons of mass destructions and they can lead to the death of many innocent lives throughout the world--then this is Haram, not religiously allowed to develop or use these weapons… Iran hasn't said we do not wish any inspectors to be here…We have certain considerations vis- a-vis individuals from these three countries. Their trust is under a shadow of doubt.
Question: You have designated all American inspectors of course. Now you are de-designating-- which means essentially firing--all the French and the German and the British ones. The IAEA says this will cripple its ability to do the inspections. The IAEA does say there are many unanswered questions…essentially around two sites which were never declared by Iran as nuclear sites… The IAEA believes that they have traced of uranium there. Why would you not answer that question? Were those sites part of a uranium enrichment facility and, if so, why were they never declared?
Raisi: All of the questions have been answered. Whether there were questions that were in any given specific time frame... When we responded to these questions, we did so in official meetings with IAEA officials. Any unanswered questions or ambiguities were clarified. So the misunderstanding or lack of good will that exists, they're not founded in reality. They are simply allegations.
Question: Iran is the only country that has only a civilian program, as you claim it is, that enriches to the level you enrich, to 60 percent and higher. Why are you enriching to these high numbers? Doesn't that raise people's suspicions?
Raisi: In the beginning we were not seeking 60 percent levels of enrichment…What the Islamic Republic of Iran did was in response to a breaking of commitment of the signatories to the [2015 nuclear] agreement… The action that we intend to take is not intended to reach nuclear weapons of any type or a military dimension of any type. But it is a response for the lack of commitment demonstrated by the Europeans. And should they at any time return to a fulfillment of their commitments, rest assured and have no doubt that the Islamic Republic, as it has done in the past, will fully adhere to her commitments.
To the U.N. General Assembly on September 19: “America's withdrawal from the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) was a violation of the Muslim principle of faithfulness to the covenant. The U.S. government continues to avoid fulfilling its obligations under the JCPOA by clearly violating the provisions of Security Council Resolution 2231.
“With this behavior, America has actually prescribed lawlessness and coercion instead of cooperation, contrary to all its claims. America needs to prove by building trust that it has good intentions and has a real will to fulfill its commitments and finalize the path. The Europeans, who after years of not adhering to their commitments, including the cancellation of sanctions, are now violating the JCPOA and U.N. Security Council Resolution 2231, must understand that they will lose if they speed up the costly path of confrontation.
“Nuclear weapons have no place in the defense doctrine of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Official reports of relevant international authorities and even Western intelligence communities have repeatedly emphasized the truth of this claim. As in the past two decades, the Islamic Republic of Iran will in no way abandon the inalienable rights of its nation to peacefully benefit from nuclear technology.
“The world's only nuclear criminal does not fulfill its obligations under the NPT to disarm nuclear weapons, but by imposing illegal unilateral sanctions, it violates the indisputable principles of international law and the United Nations Charter and violates the rights of nations.
“But these sanctions have had no effect on our nation's decisiveness in the country's progress. It is time for America to end its crisis of decision-making and choose the right path.”
To media executives on September 18: “During the nuclear agreement, the only party that fulfilled its commitments was the Islamic Republic of Iran, and the United States and European countries violated their commitments and did not fulfill their commitments.”
“Now it is the Americans who should ask their government why, despite the implementation of commitments by Iran and the non-deviation of nuclear activities, the policy of pressure and sanctions against Iran continues?”
To foreign policy analysts on September 18: “With the change of the government in the U.S. (in 2021) and the declaration of readiness to return to its commitments, the Islamic Republic of Iran announced its readiness and pursued negotiations seriously for a good agreement, but after some time it became clear that the opposite parties did not adhere to their commitments.”
“The American government, due to the wrong advice of some seemingly Iranian mercenary elements, as well as the wrong estimates of the spy services, abandoned the negotiations and set its heart on the results of the riots, while the Islamic Republic of Iran is now a strong tree, and these impulses have no effect on its stability.”
“Regarding sanctions, Biden said at the beginning of his career that he does not accept Trump's method of withdrawing from the JCPOA. So far, we have not seen any different action in practice. The expectation is that if the U.S. government says it adheres to its commitments in words, it will show its adherence in practice.”
“The Islamic Republic of Iran, before any law, regulations and supervision, according to the fatwa of the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, considers any production and use of nuclear weapons prohibited.”
On the Gaza War
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
In a speech on October 17: “The bombardment of Gaza must stop. The world is witnessing the Zionist regime's genocide of Palestinians in Gaza, immediately. We must respond, we must react to what is happening in Gaza.”
“If these crimes continue, Muslims and the Resistance forces will lose their patience and no one will be able to stop them. They should know this and they should not expect others to stop certain groups from doing certain things.”
“Whatever crimes the Zionist regime commits will fail to compensate for its disgraceful defeat during the Al-Aqsa Storm operation.”
“Based on various [sources of] information, the Americans are the policymakers and regulators of the current policies of the Zionist regime. The United States is responsible in this matter and must accept its responsibility.”
In a speech on October 10: “The cause of this destructive storm was the continuous brutality and ferocity of the fake usurper regime against the Palestinian nation. This regime cannot conceal its monstrous and devious face in the attack on Gaza and the massacre of Gazans through the act of lying or by playing the victim. By speaking nonsense, it cannot attribute the bravery of the Palestinian youth and their intelligent plans to non-Palestinians.”
“From the military and intelligence aspects, this defeat is irreparable. It is a devastating earthquake. It is unlikely that the usurping regime will be able to use the help of the West to repair the deep impacts that this incident has left on its ruling structures.”
“This great calamity was brought on by the actions of the Zionists themselves; Because when you exceed the limits of ferocity and brutality, you should anticipate a ‘storm.’”
“The current government ruling the usurping regime is to blame for this, for it did not hesitate to take any sort of brutal measures against the oppressed Palestinian nation.”
“Did the zealous Palestinian nation, with its thousands-year-old history, have any other choice but to create a ‘storm’?”
“The calculation of the illegitimate regime and its supporters in this regard is also wrong. The rulers and decision-makers of the Zionist regime and their supporters should know that these actions will bring a greater disaster upon them, and the Palestinian people, with a firmer determination, will slap their hideous faces harder in response to these crimes.”
“Of course, we defend Palestine and its struggle…but those who say the work of Palestinians stems from non-Palestinians don’t know the Palestinian nation and underestimate it…this is where their error lies and where they miscalculate.”
“All of the Muslim world is dutybound to support Palestine and will also support Hezbollah...this action is the work of the Palestinians themselves.”
President Ebrahim Raisi
In a speech at the Arab League & Organization of Islamic Cooperation Summit on November 11: “Today, Palestine is the benchmark of Islamic and human honor.
“Mr President. At the outset, I would like to thank the Saudi government for hosting and holding this important and joint summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and the Arab League in this sensitive period of regional developments and current circumstances.
“Today, in this emergency summit, we gathered here to address the most important issues of the Islamic world, meaning the Palestinian issue, one of the disasters of human history, and the heroic Gaza, to take a historic and fateful decision.
“All the problems of the Islamic world are solvable in the light of unity and cohesion. Relying on God Almighty and His absolute power and trusting in the abilities and capabilities of the Islamic world is the way to save the Islamic Ummah, and not trusting the controlling and hegemonic powers. The Islamic Republic of Iran has pursued a policy of good neighborliness and harmony and opened its arms of brotherhood and friendship to all Islamic countries.
“Today we have gathered here in order to respond to the cry made by oppressed Muslims to other Muslims, and today the Messenger of God (may God bless him and grant him peace) is the one who brings solace to the land of Palestine. Today, what does the Prophet of Islam expect from his Ummah? Today, what does the Islamic nation want from its leaders and governments?
“O my brothers in religion, today is the day of conflict between the right and the wrong, and the fabricated entity of Israel is a pharaoh for our time and a symbol of corruption on earth and the killing of innocents. The million-strong demonstrations across the globe indicate that the Palestinian issue is in the hearts of the peoples, and for this day is the day of the victory of blood over sword.
“What happened in the Gaza Strip over the past five weeks is a shameful and historic disgrace to morals, law and humanity.
“The Occupying Regime, in violation of all international rules, launched a fierce attack on the Gaza Strip using indiscriminate bombing and the use of phosphorus bombs and other prohibited weapons with the aim of genocide, and turned half of the Gaza Strip into a hill of dirt. To date, more than 11,000 innocent people have been killed, in addition to more than 3,000 people remaining under the rubble, and most of the victims are innocent women and children. The killing of medical staff and reporters and the bombing of hospitals are part of these horrific crimes. The worst thing is the likely loss of the lives of the victims who have not received medicines and medical supplies due to the siege of the Zionist regime.
“The events in the Gaza Strip are a confrontation between the axis of honor and the axis of evil, and everyone must clarify which path they have fallen into.
“Undoubtedly, the U.S. government is the main perpetrator and accomplice to this crime. Israel is the illegitimate child of America. It is America that has preferred support it over the sacred lives of thousands of oppressed Palestinian children. By immediately forming its security cabinet in the occupied territories, America encouraged the Zionist regime to carry out criminal operations against the helpless people of Gaza and called it legitimate defense. The claim of legitimate defense by the occupying forces, who are constantly violating the rights of Palestinians, is one of the bitter ironies of history, which is not compatible with any of the established legal rules and international standards.
“At the same time, the U.S. warship was sent to the region, thus effectively entering the war on behalf of Israel. The all-out support of the Zionist regime in the U.N. Security Council and preventing the adoption of a resolution to stop the genocide of Palestinians in Gaza was another service of America to the aggressors, allowing them to conduct war crimes more than ever.
“Another action of the U.S. is arming and supporting the Zionist regime with all kinds of deadly weapons and filling up the arms reserves of the usurping Israel, in addition to providing billions of dollars in aid to the military budget of this regime. Both the Zionist regime's war machine and its fuel belong to the Americans. Heavy shipments of weapons are being sent on a daily basis and the Zionist enemy has so far dropped bombs equivalent to seven atomic bombs on the scale of the Hiroshima crime on the people of Gaza. This crime is considered as participation in the crime and should be strictly pursued by international authorities.
“The most destructive role is the role of America. The killing of millions of people in the world, including in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and other Islamic countries, is under the responsibility of America. America is the instigator of this battle by entertaining the world with contracts, taking effectiveness from all international organizations.
“Respected Islamic governments, now that the international assemblies under the influence of America are suffering from indecisiveness, characterlessness, and the lack of identity, we must take the field.
“I would like to declare that the Islamic Republic of Iran views the resistance to Palestine as a liberation movement, and that the policy of forced displacement of the people of the Gaza Strip is a continuation of violations and a war crime, and that preserving the al Aqsa Mosque and other holy places is a major necessity.
“What we repeatedly emphasized over the past years is being heard from the European and American peoples, and I hereby thank all the peoples who have shown solidarity with the people of Gaza. Today, Israel's crimes in Gaza are a reason for the awakening of people in the world. Today, attention must be directed to another topic, which is nuclear Israel. The only racist regime in the world that legitimizes the killing of children. This regime is not under the supervision of any international organization and threatens innocent people with atomic bombs.
“The Islamic resistance, which has achieved great successes in defense of Palestine and the region, is the result of the awakening of the Islamic Ummah and the experiences of more than 70 years of confronting the aggression, hegemony, and arrogance of the Zionist enemy and the arrogant countries that support it.
In a post on X (formerly Twitter) on October 28: “Zionist regime’s crimes have crossed the red lines, which may force everyone to take action. Washington asks us to not do anything, but they keep giving widespread support to Israel. The US sent messages to the Axis of Resistance but received a clear response on the battlefield.
In a call with Russian President Vladimir Putin on October 16: “The grave catastrophe that is taking place in the region is the result of the policies of the US and other Western supporters of the Zionist regime, which are doomed to failure…Given the current developments happening in Gaza, there is a possibility of the expansion of the scope of war and conflict to other fronts. In such a case, it will be more difficult to control the situation.”
“The Palestinian resistance factions are free and independent in making any decision they need, and naturally we support all the measures the resistance takes to combat the Zionist aggression within the context of its legitimate defense.”
In a call with French President Emmanuel Macron on October 15: “If the Zionist regime seeks to pay for its defeat through the continuation of these crimes (against Palestinians), the dimensions of the developments will expand.”
In a speech on October 13: “After 75 years of witnessing repression and crimes, today the new generation of Palestinians are standing up against the Zionists, and this shows that neither crime and killing, nor deceitful deals have been able to discourage and dissuade the oppressed Palestinian people from pursuing their rights.”
“Countries that support the Zionist regime should know that they are accomplices in the regime's crimes.”
“The issue of Palestine will not end by destroying Gaza; the people of Palestine and the world will hold you accountable because we consider defending Palestine as our duty.”
In a call with Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on October 12: “Iran and Saudi Arabia as two key players at the current critical juncture must support the oppressed Muslim nation of Palestine... Today we are witnessing the Resistance is dealing a heavy blow to the usurping Zionist regime. Islamic countries have a duty to cooperate and unite in order to stop the Zionists crimes against the Palestinians as soon as possible. Iran and Saudi Arabia can help ensure the legal rights of Palestinians and stop the aggression and crimes of the Zionist regime…the only principled solution to the Palestinian problem, as the main problem of the region, is to pay attention to the rights of the oppressed people of this land, based on and according to the proposal of the Republic Islamic Iran for all Palestinians to determine their fate in a democratic process and in a free and fair election. No doubt that the recent crimes of the Zionists are carried out with the green light of the supporters of this regime. However, these actions not only will not result in obtaining their goals by them (western countries and the Zionist regime) but will cause the expansion and escalation of insecurity in the region and the world.”
In a call with Ismail Haniyeh, Hamas Political Bureau chief, on October 8: “What happened with the victorious operation of the Palestinian warriors in the occupied territories was the fulfillment of the 70-year-old expectation of the Palestinian nation and the Islamic Ummah (nation), and God willing, we will soon pray together in al Aqsa Mosque.”
In a call with Ziad al Nakhalah, Secretary General of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, on October 8: “What happened in the occupied territories and in the battle with the usurping Zionist regime was a huge, unique event in the past 70 years, and you really made the Islamic community happy with this innovative and victorious operation.”
“We consider the final victory of the Palestinian nation to be a divine promise and the Iranian nation always stands by the freedom-loving and independent nations and at the top of them is the Palestinian nation.”
In remarks on October 8: “This victorious operation and the unity and cohesion observed among the resistance forces promises greater victories and proves that victory over the declining Zionist enemy is attainable.”
Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian
In an interview with NPR that aired on October 26-27: “We don't really want this conflict to spread out. Actually, we're advising everybody and encouraging them to move toward the stopping of war crimes as soon as possible. But you know, the situation remains complicated. It's difficult for our region to tolerate the fact that 7,000 civilians have been killed as the result of the bombardments of the Israeli regime. This is the image that we're now seeing in the region and because of the continuation of crimes of the Israeli regime, the whole region has been turned into a powder keg.”
“They [Iran's allies and proxies] decide for themselves. At any moment, anything can happen.”
“Two weeks ago I visited the region and I met with some leaders of the countries of my region and with the leaders of the resistance in Lebanon and also the Palestinian groups ... What I gathered from the plans that they have – they have their finger on the trigger... they have their own calculations for their own security, and as I've said they decide for themselves.”
“We consider Hamas a Palestinian liberation movement... Iran has never approved the killing of civilians, but we do have our political support for the liberation movement so that the occupied territories will be freed. Therefore, our support is only political. Today they have enough missiles, rockets and drones and they can easily get them from anywhere ... Now, currently, they have whatever it takes to produce their own weapons and they have their own training and that is why they decided themselves to go ahead with this operation.”
“Some days ago, I had a meeting with [the head of the political wing of Hamas], Mr. Ismail Haniyeh in Doha, Qatar. He said that they stand ready to combat the army of Israel for a long period of time, militarily. He said that they can come to an agreement with Israel to keep the civilians away from conflict. It will be like this: We hit their military, they hit our military. It will be just between the military people, leave the civilians out of it and we've been ready to do it for a long time.”
In a speech to the U.N. General Assembly on October 26: “It has been 18 days that we have been witness to the war crimes and genocide of the occupying Israeli regime in Gaza and the West Bank of Palestine. The United States and several European countries have sided with the occupying regime of Israel without observing the UN Charter and international law. They call a Palestinian liberation movement a terrorist, which has the right to self-defense and self-determination, but they refer to the occupying and war criminal regime that is committing genocide in Gaza as having the right to self-defense. Today, US and several European countries are watching and supporting the killing of about 6000 civilians in less than three weeks by the Israeli regime in Gaza and West Bank of Palestine. And they obviously help this regime militarily, financially and politically.
“Today in New York and from the headquarters of the United Nations I say frankly to the American statesmen and military forces who are now managing the genocide in Palestine, that we do not welcome the expansion and scope of the war in the region, but I warn if the genocide in Gaza continues, they will not be spared from this fire. It is our home and West Asia is our region. We do not compromise with any party and any side and have no reservations when it comes to our home’s security. The genocide in Gaza must stop immediately. The forced displacement of the people of Gaza must be stopped immediately.
“According to international law, the Palestinian liberation movement Hamas is fighting the occupation and has a legitimate right. According to our negotiations, Hamas is ready to release civilian prisoners. At the same time, the world should support the release of 6,000 Palestinians held in Israeli prisons.
“1--According to history and based on the documents of the UN, the Palestinian issue has a history of about 80 years. Therefore, trying to reduce its dimensions to an attack and on a Palestinian liberation group is a big lie.
“2--According to the international law, as well as hundreds of resolutions of this very same Assembly, the entire land of Palestine is an occupied land, and according to this, the Zionist regime is recognized as an aggressor and an occupier.
“3- The Palestinian nation, like any other nation under occupation, has the "indisputable and inherent right to self-determination" and has the right to directly and freely decide on its independence and to create an independent government to decide for itself. According to international law and as specified by Security Council Resolutions No. 309 and 323 of 1972 in the case of Namibia, the "inalienable right to self-determination and independence" is permanent and does not disappear with the passage of time. Therefore, just as the prolonged occupation of the land does not create any rights for the occupier, the passage of time does not diminish the right to determine the fate of the occupied nation.
“4- According to the principles and rules of international law and hundreds of resolutions of this Assembly, the Palestinian nation, as a nation under occupation, has the "legitimate right to resist the occupation using all available methods, including armed struggle." Therefore the recent hypocritical and fraudulent efforts to introduce the struggle of the Palestinian nation against the occupiers as terrorist actions will not deceive the free nations and the awakened consciences of the world.
“5- Despite the effective support of the overwhelming majority of the members of the United Nations for the approval of hundreds of resolutions in the General Assembly confirming the right of the Palestinian nation to self-determination, unfortunately, in practice not only no part of the rights of the Palestinians have been realized, but the crimes of the occupiers have become more widespread and severe. We believe, this body must decisively use all its powers to fulfill all the rights of the Palestinians.
“6- Unfortunately, the performance of the Security Council in connection with the Palestinian issue is completely passive. So far, the council has not even been able to force the occupying regime to implement even one clause of the weakest resolutions of this body.
“7- The United States, as the unwavering and permanent supporter of the occupying regime, is the main cause of the failures of the United Nations, especially the Security Council, in upholding the rights of the Palestinians. The country has for dozens of times prevented the Security Council from fulfilling its duties in this field, an example of which is the veto of 45 resolutions of this council, the last of which happened last week, during which the United States not only opposed ceasefire in Gaza, but refused to even abstain on a resolution to make it possible to send humanitarian aid to civilians under bombardment and siege in Gaza, and opposed it. This is the ultimate irresponsibility and a clear example of trampling on basic human principles.
“8- We believe that complete and comprehensive solution to the Palestinian issue is only possible through the full realization of the inalienable right of this nation to self-determination and the establishment of an independent Palestinian state in all of the Palestinian territories and with Al-Quds as its capital. The entire land of Palestine, from the sea to the river, belongs only to the original Palestinians, including Christians, Jews and the Muslims and no institution or country has the right or can give any part of it to another person or group. This is a false illusion, a crude fantasy that may only come true in a dream. The Islamic Republic Iran believes in the right of the Palestinian nation to resist against occupation and has offered a political and democratic initiative which includes the holding of a referendum for self-determination amongst the original residents of Palestine which has been registered by the UN.
“9- The essence and nature of the Zionist regime is based on aggression, occupation, crime, lies and deception. So far, this regime has launched more than 20 wars in the region, invaded all its neighbors without exception, attacked a number of countries outside its region, and still occupies the territory of some other Arab countries in addition to Palestine. It has committed all the four main international crimes, namely aggression, war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide, not once but many times and in some cases, all four crimes simultaneously, and to advance his illegitimate goals, it has failed to adhere to any humane principles and legal rules.
“10- We must see reality as it is; The reality is that brutal occupation has transformed into brutal apartheid. It is this terrible combination of “chronic occupation” and “deep apartheid” that gives the occupying regime psychological permission to butcher and mass kill the people under occupation.
“Therefore, now is the time to consider the real face of this regime and recognize it as it is, as the General Assembly did in 1975 through Resolution No. 3379 by identifying ‘Zionism as racism’. Although the aforementioned resolution was canceled by voting in 1991 under the pressure of the United States and in the false hope of advancing the so-called peace process, today it is more than ever clear that the occupying regime basically does not grant any rights to the people under occupation and as the U.N. Human Rights rapporteur declared in his official report in 2022, the characteristics of an apartheid regime.
“I would like to emphasize that:
“1- The recent action of the Palestinian nation as well as the action of the liberation organization of Hamas against the occupiers, according to applicable rules of international law, is completely legitimate and is their inherent right, and attributing any other title to it is absolutely illegal and unacceptable.
“2- Claims such the right of the so-called "legitimate defense" should be granted to an occupying regime is also a very ridiculous joke. It is certainly not possible to change the places of the killer and the victim by misusing some expressions.
“3- The Al-Aqsa Storm operation is a reaction to the continuation of occupation and the aggressions against the Palestinians and a response to the widespread crimes of the Zionist regime in recent months. In fact, this operation was the volcanic eruption of the concentrated anger of the entire Palestinian nation against 75 years of continuous and widespread crimes by the Zionist regime.
“4- According to international law, resisting aggression and occupation, including by armed means, is the inherent and legitimate right of the Palestinian nation, and it does not require the permission or order of any country or institution to exercise it. Their recent choice by the Hamas liberation movement regarding the time, place and quality of fulfilling this right is also their own independent decision.
“5- As His Eminence, Imam Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, stated, we cannot be indifferent to these cases and pass by them, and if the crimes of the Zionist regime continue, no one can stop the Muslims and the resistance forces. Therefore, those who constantly talk about the need to prevent the spread of the conflict, must put pressure on the Zionist regime to immediately and completely stop their crimes.
“6- The Islamic Republic of Iran, while fully adhering to its international legal obligations and like all the free nations of the world, firmly supports the legitimate struggle of the Palestinian nation for the full realization of its inalienable right to self-determination and the establishment of an independent Palestinian state in all their lands with Al-Quds Al-Sharif as its capital. And we believe that this is the only way to establish lasting peace and security in the West Asian region.“7- Both the recent statements of the official and military authorities of the Zionist regime and its actions in Gaza prove that the killing of more than 5,500 civilians, of which more than 62 percent are children and women, and the wounding and maiming of more than 17,000 other civilians, completely cutting off water, electricity, fuel, food and medicine to a population of several million and preventing any effective assistance to them and brutally and extensively destroying residential places, mosques, churches, hospitals and infrastructure facilities, have been carried out completely deliberately and with an intent of "revenge" and "collective punishment" which are explicitly prohibited under international law and leave no room for doubt that these actions are a clear violation of international law and a clear example of the crime of aggression, war crime, crime against humanity and genocide.
“8- In this context, I will only mention the crime in Al-Mu'amdani Hospital. Taking into consideration that under international humanitarian law, attacking hospitals under all conditions is indisputably and irrefutably prohibited, and considering the extent and brutal dimensions of the Zionist regime's crime in the attack against Al-Mu'amdani Hospital, it is clear that this heinous crime alone contains all the components of a war crime, a crime against humanity, and a crime of genocide, and it alone is sufficient to hold accountable and prosecute all its commanders, perpetrators, and supporters.
“9- The actions of the United States, which directly participates in this battle through financial and armed support as well as direct military action and effective political support, are a clear violation of the charter and international legal obligations of that country and, as a result, hold it internationally responsible. In addition, while the US itself is actually and directly involved in committing crimes against Palestinians, it is not in a position to invite others to exercise self-restraint and refrain from spreading the war. Therefore, we strongly warn against the uncontrollable consequences of the unlimited financial, arms and operational supports by the White House to the Tel Aviv regime which have led to the expansion and added to the severity of the bombardments of the civilians and the Palestinian women and children in Gaza and the West Bank.
“10- The current developments in Palestine also clearly proved that the only result of any normalization of relations with the Israeli regime is tantamount to ignoring the legitimate and historical rights of the Palestinian nation and granting the license to perpetrate any crime against it, and therefore any attempt at normalization of ties with the Israeli regime is doomed to failure.
“11- Preventing the escalation of the Palestinian situation, especially considering the current turbulent conditions in different regions of the world, is a global responsibility. We, on our part, are ready to play a more serious role in this field, in line with our recent efforts. The leaders of the Hamas liberation movement have voiced readiness to release the non-military prisoners and Iran, Turkey and Qatar stand ready to play their part in this very important endeavor. Naturally, release of the 6000 Palestinian prisoners with the occupier regime is another necessity.
“12- Appreciating the positive and realistic positions of the UN Secretary General and his efforts on the ground for sending humanitarian aid to Gaza and stopping the war, it is expected form the UN to employ strong terminology and Under the seventh chapter of the United Nations Charter, force the Zionist regime to immediately stop its war crimes, genocide and the mass killing of civilians and provide other grounds for the full realization of the Palestinian nation's right to self-determination. This is, of course, the inherent duty of the United Nations, which has been delayed for decades.”
Remarks on state television on October 16: “Leaders of the Resistance will not allow the Zionist regime to take any action in Gaza. ... All options are open and we cannot be indifferent to the war crimes committed against the people of Gaza.”
The resistance front is capable of waging a long-term war with the enemy (Israel)... in the coming hours, we can expect a preemptive action by the resistance front.”
In a statement on October 15: “If the measures aimed at immediately stopping the Israeli attacks that are killing children in the Gaza Strip end in a deadlock, it is highly probable that many other fronts will be opened. This option is not ruled out and this is becoming increasingly more probable. If the Zionist entity [Israel] decides to enter Gaza, the resistance leaders will turn it into a graveyard of the occupation soldiers.”
In a meeting with Hamas political chief Ismail Haniyeh in Doha, Qatar on October 14: “Supporting Palestine is a religious, humanitarian and moral duty, and today, all Muslims, the faithful and freedom-loving people should stand by Palestine and its oppressed people more than ever…The extent of Zionists’ war crimes against the people of Gaza is great because the blow they have received from the Palestinian nation has been unprecedented…During these days, in line with supporting the people of Gaza against Israeli war crimes, we proposed an extraordinary foreign ministerial meeting of Islamic countries be held, and will press ahead with our efforts and back any initiative by Muslim states aimed at supporting the Palestinian nation…The al Aqsa operation was the Palestinian nation’s natural reaction to the relentless crimes and provocative moves by the extremist government of Netanyahu, especially Zionists’ repeated acts of aggression against the al Aqsa Mosque. If the Israeli regime’s crimes in Gaza continue, any possibility in the region is likely, and the Islamic Republic of Iran will continue its attempts to halt Israeli war crimes.”
In a speech on October 13: “With the continuation of aggression, war crimes and the siege of Gaza, the opening of other fronts is a real possibility. I will discuss the situation in Gaza with the Lebanese authorities. Iran strongly continues its political and media support for the Palestinian resistance. If the Americans want to prevent the war in the region from developing, they must control Israel.”
In a call with E.U. foreign policy chief Josep Borrell on October 10: “If Europe and the West had distanced themselves from double standards and had reined in Netanyahu’s crimes, perhaps Palestine would not witness this situation.”
IRGC Commander Maj Gen Hossein Salami
In a speech on October 16: “Today, as acknowledged by everyone, the Zionist regime has not only suffered defeat but also been humiliated, and Hamas, single-handedly and without reliance on any other power, has inflicted a major defeat on them. No matter what the Zionists do in the future, the regime cannot recover from such humiliation.”
“Israel's delusion of grandeur collapsed with the operation by Hamas and its powerless reality was revealed to everyone. Today, the fake identity of the Zionist regime has fallen apart and nothing else is left of it but a hollow shell.”
“Today, the US and its allies consider the Islamic Revolution as a phenomenon that the more they engage with it, the stronger it becomes, and this fact has faced the arrogant front with serious challenges.”
In a speech on October 13: “Congratulations to all the worshipers, believers of the great and revolutionary nation of Islamic Iran and the resistant and proud nation of Islam, especially the tireless and honorable fighters of Palestine, the recent amazing and divine victories of the proud fighters of Palestine over the usurping, fake, and criminal Zionist regime. The event that shocked the world is an unprecedented event beyond the imagination of all experts, thinkers, strategists, and politicians of the world. The biggest defeat in the history of the existence of the fake Zionist regime since 1948 for this regime and the biggest victory for the Palestinian movement happened in the Al-Aqsa Flood operation. From about a hundred years ago, when the United States and Britain plunged a poisonous dagger into the Islamic world's flank, until today, the most unprecedented crimes against the people of Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Egypt by the Zionist regime with the support of the United States, Britain and It has happened in some European countries. In the midst of these sad and horrible crimes, the Palestinians have preserved their identity and sense of resistance, and last week on the morning of Saturday, October 7th, you witnessed an exceptional glow on the earth, as if the soul-giving verses of the Quran were being interpreted on the earth for the Palestinians.”
IRGC Deputy Commander Gen Mohammad Reza Naqdi
In a statement on October 10: “After the operation, the illusion of the invincibility of the Zionist regime and its false power became evident to the whole world.”
“The military power and capabilities of this regime is only limited to the killing of innocent and defenseless people. Today, Israel's weakness and impotence in dealing with Palestinian fighters have become evident. It was revealed how dependent the regime is on the arrogant powers. In a matter of only a few hours the vulnerable nature of the regime was fully disclosed.”
“Americans are lagging behind in global developments and they need to know that the world and the thoughts of the nations are changing. They need to understand today's world, update themselves, and be where they should be. If they continue to live in delusions of dominance and power, they will not reach anything and will continue to face more defeats and resolute responses. The people of the world have awakened and the Palestinian fighters have tasted the sweetness of victory. Therefore, the continuation of the massacre of innocent and defenseless nations will not yield any result or achievement for the world superpowers.”
Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Nasser Kanani
“The crimes of the Zionist regime are carried out with the support of the United States and Washington must be held accountable.”
Hamas officials “stated that they are ready to take necessary measures to release the citizens and civilians held by resistance groups, but their point was that such measures require preparations that are impossible under daily bombardment by the Zionists against various parts of Gaza.”
In a statement on October 9: “The accusations linked to an Iranian role… are based on political reasons.”
Iran does not intervene “in the decision-making of other countries, including Palestine.”
Advisor to the Supreme Leader and Expediency Council Member Ali Shamkhani
Zionists who are campaigning for this operation, still don't understand that it isn't possible to win the intelligent designers of #AlAqsaFlood in Gaza through media operations.”
“White House is responsible for any direct action of Washington against Palestinians' #LegitimateDefense and development of violence.”
In a post on X (formerly Twitter) on October 8: “Decisive operation of #AlAqsaFlood is a real example of legitimate defense against a criminal regime, which did not stop any oppression and crime against people of #Palestine.”
“Palestinian resistance is an independent movement whose strength is due to widespread support of people.”
On the U.S.-Iran Prisoner Swap
President Ebrahim Raisi
“Unfortunately, history has shown the lack of trust towards the United States because it has trampled upon commitments and broken promises repeatedly.”
“The funds were unjustly confiscated from the people of Iran” and “will be solely spent to meet the needs of the people of Iran.”
“Certainly, any step taken to fulfill the commitments will be a confidence builder for us.”
The swap “could have been accomplished much sooner had it not been for the wrong calculus of the other side in thinking that instead of choosing the table, pausing the conversations, they are better off betting on the dead horses of rioters and those who cause instability.”
On the Russia-Ukraine War
President Ebrahim Raisi
To the U.N. General Assembly on September 19: “Regarding the war between Ukraine and Russia, I would like to emphasize once again the position of the Islamic Republic of Iran in rejecting war as a solution to any conflict. We do not consider the war in Europe to be in the interest of any European side. Rejecting any ceasefire plan in the Ukraine war by the Americans shows that America has a long-term plan to weaken Europe.
“We support any initiative to end the war and start the political process and declare our readiness to play a constructive role in this field.”
“Iran's relations with Russia in various political, economic and defense fields started years before the Ukraine war, and any interaction and exchange between the two countries in the field of defense is also related to before the Ukraine war.”
“We have announced repeatedly that we are willing to mediate in order to bring a cessation of hostilities between the Russian Federation and Ukraine.”
“And our question remains for the United States. Why such eagerness in supplying military hardware and bringing in the dollar amount from those supplies and sales, rather than vigorously entering the arena in order to promote the cessation of hostilities and promote peace?”
To foreign policy analysts on Sept. 18, 2023: “We are against the war and we are ready to mediate in order to end it, but the taxes of the American people pay for war-mongering and to fill the pockets of arms factories from the sale of weapons in this field.”
President Ebrahim Raisi
In Nowruz remarks on March 21: “In the field of foreign policy, the government's approach from the beginning was ‘balanced diplomacy’ and ‘revival of neighborhood policy and regionalism.’ The year 1401 was the year of fruition of this policy.”
“’Balanced diplomacy’ means that we did not wait for countries that hesitate to cooperate with Iran. Procrastination in the new world and new order causes the country to lose its role and position.
“Iran’s position in the region is a strategic and irreplaceable position. One of the important features of the new world order is the transfer of power to the Asian continent. The role and hegemony of America in the world is declining.
“Among the strategic plans of the government in the new year is to use the unique and strategic position of dear Iran and to activate the ‘North-South’ and ‘East-West’ corridors to achieve a place on the level of the great nation of Iran in the new order.”
On Iran’s Rapprochement with Saudi Arabia
Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian
In a tweet on March 10: “The return of normal relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia provides great capacities to the two countries, the region and the Islamic world. The neighborhood policy, as the key axis of the thirteenth government's foreign policy, is strongly moving in the right direction, and the diplomatic apparatus is actively behind the preparation of more regional steps.”
In a tweet on March 10: “Today, in phone calls, I received the congratulations of the Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Qatar and the Foreign Ministers of Iraq and Oman regarding the agreement between Tehran and Riyadh to return the relations between the two countries to a normal state and to open embassies in Tehran and Riyadh. The neighborhood policy of Dr. Raisi's government is moving in the right direction.”
Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani
In remarks published by Tasnim News on March 10: “Ayatollah Raisi's visit to China in February and the conversation between Chinese President Xi Jinping and the President of our country provided the platform for the formation of new and very serious negotiations between the delegations of Iran and Saudi Arabia.
“The talks between the two countries were frank, transparent, comprehensive and constructive. Clearing misunderstandings and looking towards the future in Tehran-Riyadh relations will definitely lead to the development of regional stability and security and increase cooperation between the countries of the Persian Gulf and the Islamic world to manage the existing challenges.
“I appreciate the constructive role of the People's Republic of China in supporting the development of relations between countries, which is necessary for solving challenges and increasing peace and stability and promoting international cooperation.”
Military Advisor to the Supreme Leader Maj. Gen. Yahya Rahim Safavi
In remarks on March 12: “What we will witness in the future in the region will be different from what has happened so far, and it is important to look at the agreement between Iran and Saudi Arabia with rationality.”
“It is in the interest of the region and the parties to the agreement to consider honesty and rationality in the long term, and in my opinion, this agreement is in the interest of the two countries and the West Asian region and is not against any of the countries in the region. Of course, it is natural for arrogance to be upset about this issue and disrupt the work.”
“The era of the decline of American and Zionist power has come. Looking to the neighbors and looking to the east will increase the geopolitical weight of Iran and change the situation of the people from the current situation.”
“Iran should look at this situation of tension between America and Europe in Ukraine and Taiwan tension as an opportunity and move with a specific strategy based on common interests with China and Russia and the common threats of the United States against the three countries.”
“It should be said about the recent agreement that this agreement was an earthquake in the political field and the end of American hegemony in the region, and with this agreement, the post-American era in the Persian Gulf region has begun.”
“The Chinese have decided to become the world's first economy by 2030, and this agreement between Iran and Saudi Arabia, mediated by China, was China's second biggest blow to America. Saudi Arabia is China's largest supplier of oil, and on the other hand, China's strategic agreement with Iran to invest in the development of our infrastructure was a great agreement.”
“China has expanded its geo-economic area from the China Sea to the Persian Gulf with a specific strategy. It seems that China and Russia will continue to help Saudi Arabia become a member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. This link can act as a barrier against NATO and the military power of the West in the future.”
On the Economy
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
In Nowruz remarks on March 21: “In my opinion, in 1401, the most important issue for the nation was the issue of the country’s economy, which is directly related to people’s livelihoods. On the matter of the economy, there were bitter moments but also sweet ones.”
“The bitterness was mainly because of inflation and high prices, which is truly upsetting, especially the increase in the price of food and the basic necessities of life. When there is a significant increase in food prices and the prices of basic necessities, the economically weaker sectors of society are the ones who are impacted the most, because food items and the main, essential living supplies have the largest share in their household basket. As a result, the pressure is mainly on them, and this of course, was one of the bitter occurrences. In my opinion, regarding the major economic issues of the country, this issue was a more fundamental, significant matter that was bitter.”
“Based on the information I have received, production was supported in the country in the year 1401. Thousands of factories that had been shut down or were semi-operational started operating again.
“There was an upsurge in knowledge-based companies. Of course, it was not as much as what I had asked for in the previous year, but there was still a significant increase in the numbers of these companies. There was also an increase in the product value of these companies.
“The issue of employment improved. That is to say, unemployment decreased by a percentage – even though it was a small percentage – and employment increased a bit, which is something that should be valued.
“[T]hese constructive activities must continue this year, in the year 1402, so that they can create prosperity in people’s lives and bring food to their tables, especially among the weaker social classes.
“So, I spoke about production, and I place importance on it, but investment is also important alongside production. I would like to draw the attention of both the respected government officials and the private sector to this matter. In the last decade, we fell behind greatly in terms of investment. The issue of investment is one of the important gaps in our country. Investment needs to take place. This too is an important task.
“Considering all these different aspects, the things that are important, including both inflation and domestic production – inflation is the main problem and domestic production is definitely one of the keys to saving the country from economic problems. So, considering these matters, I would like to announce that this year’s slogan is ‘Inflation control, growth in production.’”
In remarks on January 30: “We have many professionals among our human resources, fortunately. One of the things we take pride in and one of the advantages we have is that we have a large professional workforce in the country. Well, we had, for example, about 150,000 students in the beginning of the Revolution. Now we have millions of students and millions of graduates in different scientific fields. These people need jobs. They want to have an occupation. Yes, it is an honor to have a young, professional workforce, but what if they are unemployed? This is a disgrace. It is not something to take pride in anymore. We keep asking ourselves why these people are leaving. Why do they move abroad? Well, you need to give them jobs. Some time ago, there was a similar meeting in this Hussainiyah. I said there that our educated, competent, young people who have either come from abroad, have studied abroad, or have studied inside the country only want two things from us. The first is a job, and the second thing they want is to have the opportunity to advance scientifically. We must provide these people with careers. If we fail to advance rapidly, we will not be able to create employment for this large group of young professionals and scientists.”
“We must prepare the environment in such a way that people can easily take part in business. They can trade and produce. We must resolve these conflicting decisions. The administrative process for obtaining a license, to solve the problems of those who are engaged in business must be corrected. We must minimize the processes and deregulate. This is not the same as being careless. Another issue related to the improvement of the business environment is about the arbitrary interventions of regulatory and non-regulatory institutions. These must also be removed. They interfere in the work. Now, sometimes the issue is about legal interventions where someone is told that what they are doing is illegal. [Intervention] is needed there. No one has any objections to that. However, they intervene arbitrarily at times. They give illegal opinions even though there is no need for them to do. They interfere in people’s business for no reason. This must also be eliminated.”
“Economic growth is absolutely crucial in order to solve the tangible problems associated with people’s livelihood and the difficulties experienced in households.”
“We need rapid, continuous growth. The reason for this is that we are behind in some areas. In the 1390s [from 2011 to 2021], we countered a setback and a so-called relative standstill in economic activities for various reasons. Not all of this can be attributed to weak management, no. Some of it is related to external factors, and part of it is related to internal factors. The sanctions had an impact, the reduction in oil prices at a certain point in time had an effect. The fact that the country was focused on nuclear energy and the economy was dependent on it had an impact. Various issues like this have had an impact. As a consequence of this, we are currently a decade behind. And there are many negative indicators showing this. These are reliable indicators from official organizations and are not just empty claims.
“Compensating for having fallen back is not an easy task. It will naturally require continuous economic growth over a medium period of time, if not the long term. In other words, we must concentrate our efforts for at least seven, eight, or 10 years, and proceed while maintaining the necessary conditions.
“This year, in the exhibition that was held here two days ago, I saw that good work has been done both in the field of knowledge-based companies and also in the field of job creation and entrepreneurship. Some relatively good work has been done.
“As I have said many times before, due to the country’s God-given resources, its geographical, international, political position, and especially its human resources, the country’s talent and growth capacity are very high and exceptional in certain fields. For this reason, the future of the nation and the prospects of Iran's progress are much brighter than the current predictions.
“The advancement of a country’s position is largely related to its economic situation. When a country’s currency depreciates, its economic possibilities diminish. It becomes less credible in today’s world. We need to experience economic growth in order to maintain the country’s position in the world.”
President Ebrahim Raisi
In Nowruz remarks on March 21: “As your servant, there is not a day that I do not suffer from the hardships of people's lives and livelihoods, especially the weaker brackets. In terms of reducing inflation, the 59 percent inflation in September 2021 reached 43 percent in February 2023, but this number is not satisfactory in my opinion. The main plan of the government in 2023 is to control inflation along with sustainable economic growth.”
“New records were recorded in the field of knowledge-based companies, and the government's promise in the field of employment was fulfilled. In the production sector, the nine-month growth [rate] reached 3.7 percent, and in the employment sector, the unemployment rate reached 8.2 percent, which is the lowest rate in recent years.
“One of the challenges of the 1390s, which is the lost decade of the country's economy, was the low and negative growth of investment in some years, but this year, investment grew well like other sectors.
“In 1401, more than three thousand stagnant or semi-stagnant factories and production units were activated. In the knowledge-based sector, 140 important and key projects were started in the sectors of energy, agriculture, space, transportation, medical equipment, biotechnology, and employment in science and technology parks and growth centers increased by 50 percent.”
On Protests in Iran
President Ebrahim Raisi
In a CNN interview that aired on September 24:
Question: So around a year ago that there were those demonstrations across Iran that caused a great deal of internal strife…At the heart of it is this issue of the hijab, about whether women should have their heads covered. I grew up as a Muslim in India. I've traveled all over the Muslim world. Hundreds of millions of Muslims do not believe that this is something women should be told to do. There are dozens of Islamic countries where the governments are very pious and believe in Islam. They are devoted, and they don't believe this. They believe women should have the choice and the right to wear whatever they want and not have a patriarchal system tell them what to do. Are all these hundreds of millions, maybe over a billion Muslims, wrong and only the Islamic Republic of Iran is right?
Raisi: What occurred during the days that you spoke of earlier, that was the presence of a few. The people of Iran did not support in any way those that rioted in the streets of Iran. The people's lack of support defeated their plans. There were some who were fooled. There were others who committed murder, conducted serious crimes. But what occurred last year was a war conducted in the media by the enemy.
I don't want to name TV networks or news networks, but networks who are headquartered in the three European countries and in the United States of America who broadcast news 24 hours a day. They openly teach tactics of terror.
Question: But the hijab matters to Iranian women. I've talked to them. They have believed it is an infringement on their rights.
Raisi: Today in the Islamic Republic, hijab is a law. And when an issue becomes part of the law, then everyone must adhere to the laws. So it is the same the world over….The Americans and certain European countries are only seeking to cause a bipolar situation in our society… But rest assured that through the use of these tools they will not succeed. The people of Iran are enlightened, are people of faith, are spiritual people, and they deeply understand that the United States of America and three European countries don't care about their rights, their hijab. A life of respect for women has existed for hundreds and hundreds of years in Iran. It's not a development that we have observed in the past few decades.
To the U.N. General Assembly on September 19: “Last year was the year of the victory of the Iranian nation. Some Western countries and their intelligence services made a miscalculation last year and once again underestimated the power of the Iranian nation.
“Since the victory of the Islamic Revolution under the leadership of Imam Khomeini, the enemies of the Iranian nation have imposed all kinds of wars, sanctions and maximum pressure on our people with ‘consecutive crises.’ It has been 45 years since these policies have failed and the Iranian nation has achieved ‘consecutive victories.’ Now they are facing an Islamic Republic that has both resisted and progressed on the basis of a deep bond with its nation.
“Last year, the Iranian nation was the target of the biggest media attack and psychological war in history. Can America, which is the biggest prison for mothers in the world, honestly worry about women's rights?
“During this period, the image that was transmitted from Iran to the world was the product of suppressing valid information and disseminating misinformation.”
To media executives on September 18: “Hijab, human rights, nuclear issues—these are all pieces that are moved around ... at the hands of the United States of America against the Islamic Republic of Iran because it is a nation that has sought to live peacefully and independently with strength yet not under the dominance of anyone.”
“So, this has been the plan set forth, and these have been the various excuses, the various tools, if you will, in their toolbox.”
“The United States and European countries fan the flames of fires that I mentioned they had set themselves. And we are widely disappointed in this plot that they have sent against the people of Iran, aimed at disruption and [creating] instability.”
“And we see the overcoming of the riots in Iran, and the chaos that was caused by those rioters last year—we took that as a victory for the people of Iran, because they came out victorious in a war that was waged against them.”
“It was an economic war as well, waged in the media, it was a psychological war effort aimed against them—it was defeated—just as sanctions that have been imposed harshly against the people of Iran have been defeated.”
“During the disturbances of last year in Iran, more than 136 thousand lies were produced in the media against Iran within 48 weeks, which cannot be justified by any standard.”
“My suggestion to the American media managers is to ask your officials to reconsider the imposition of sanctions against the Iranian nation, because the Iranian nation has overcome its problems and will not submit to sanctions.”
To foreign policy analysts on September 18: “America must have understood by now that using the language of force, either in the form of sanctions or threats against the Iranian nation, is not an effective tool, of course, our judgment will be based on actions and what can gain our trust will be changing this coercive behavior and acting based on commitments, which America has not been successful in this field so far.”
“The ill-wishers of the Iranian nation sought to repeat the Syrian model in Iran, but they were wrong because they have still not known the people of Iran and the Islamic revolution.”
“In the incident last year when a girl (Mahsa Amini) had an accident, all medical investigations showed that she was not hit by the police, but did the Western and American media agree to reflect this fact?”
“Our advice to the American government is to stop fighting and sanctioning nations. Historical findings show that in the last 250 years, America has not been at war for only 20 years.”
On the Iranian Revolution
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
In a speech to officers of the Iranian Army’s Air Force on February 8: “One of our most important needs today is national unity. National unity is a barrier. It is a strong, soaring wall standing in front of the enemy. National unity is something that played an enormous role in the victory of the Revolution and then in the progress of the Revolution. National unity. Today, we need to increase this unity as much as possible. The enemy has moved in the opposite direction. The enemy’s plot is clear to us. That is, we have no doubts about the enemy’s plot and what it wishes to do. We must know the enemy’s plot, analyze it, and plan against it. We [now] know the enemy’s plot.
“Some of their plot has been revealed by the enemy itself. Some of it has been revealed by its foolish agents here. And some of it has been shown in the reports of the organizations that prepare such reports. The enemy’s plan is clear.
“Well, there is a goal. There is a strategy and there are tactics. The enemy’s goal is to force the Revolution and the government of the Islamic Republic to its knees. Of course, they claim otherwise. The president of the United States wrote to me some 10 or 15 years ago clearly stating that ‘we do not intend to change your system.’ At the same time, we had reports that in their private centers, they were discussing how to overthrow and destroy the Islamic government and the Islamic Republic. They lie, but this is the goal. Why do they want to bring the Islamic Republic to its knees and destroy it? Well, there are various reasons. After all, the Islamic Republic has come and taken this important, strategic, profitable region, which is rich in natural and human resources, out of their hands. This is one reason.
“But another reason is that the Islamic Republic has raised the call for independence and not giving payoffs. Pay careful attention to this! We are not the only ones who want to be independent from the U.S. and global arrogance. There are other countries that want to be independent too. They want to not be under their command. The difference is that this is [only] a policy [for] them, but here it is a religious belief and conviction. This is important. This is what is important for the enemy.
“Yes, countries have this policy to not be under the influence of the U.S., but this policy changes with trade, dialogue, sitting at the negotiating table, and perhaps bribing some influential people. You see this happening in the world, don’t you? Today, they announce one thing, tomorrow the opposite. Yes, their policy is independence and not giving payoffs, but policies can be changed. This is not the case here. Here, independence and not giving payoffs are a part of religious beliefs.”
“This faith, of course, cannot be bought and sold. One who is willing to give up his faith no longer has the qualifications to work in this system. This is the difference. That is why they emphasize the Islamic Republic more than anywhere else. They are more hostile [to us] than to anyone else. They want to extend the scope of their influence over others as well. [But] here, this intention is many times more. This is the reason. I mentioned that in addition to the advantages that your country has – natural advantages, advantages in human resources, geographic advantages, climatic advantages, and everything – it also has this important [advantage] which is wanting to be an independent government, wanting to not be under another, not give payoffs, and to not accept the aggression of others. This originates from faith. That is why this is their goal. Therefore, their goal is to force the Islamic Republic to its knees. This is their goal.
“What is the strategy? Sowing discord, sowing distrust – distrust between political groups, the people’s distrust of one another, the people’s distrust of the government, the government’s distrust of the people, distrust between this person and that one, this organization and that one, so that [everyone] will distrust each other and be pessimistic about one another. When distrust arises, hope in the future will also disappear. Well, there are some differences inevitably, but these differences should not be turned into earthquake fault lines. Sometimes they bring up [the issue of] ‘women,’ sometimes they bring up the ‘Shiite and Sunni’ issue, sometimes they bring up ‘differences between generations,’ and sometimes they bring up various other issues in order to sow discord. The enemy’s strategy is to sow discord. Of course, the tactics are different. Each time they use a new tactic. The main tactics are lying and spreading rumors. They do these things so that they can sow discord. So when we see that the enemy has made unity the target of its attacks, what is our duty? Our duty is to preserve this unity, this solidarity. We must not let the enemy be victorious in its evil objective.”
President Ebrahim Raisi
In a speech on February 11: “Look at what seditions and conspiracies the enemies did in this one year, but how did the proud nation of Iran, the history-making men and women, identify the evil hand of the enemy, and appeared on the stage and shone brightly, in such a way that once again in the history of the people's revolution, they defeated the enemy.”
“The Pahlavi regime came to power with a coup against the constitutional principles and the will of the nation and betrayed this country. This regime did not pay attention to all the assets of the country and its huge capacities and only sought to do something that would please America and the domination system.”
“The first achievement of the Islamic Revolution was self-confidence and domestic resources and relying on the culture of ‘we can.’ In these 44 years, it has become clear that the Iranian nation is very capable and has many capacities.”
“Today, the Islamic Republic is in the first place in many fields in the region and has the best positions in the world; Our position today cannot be compared with the time of the oppression, which is the result of the Iranian nation's self-belief and trust in God.”
“The enemies thought that they could bring the country to a standstill with the project of chaos and riot, and therefore they launched a hybrid war, unaware that the Iranian nation knows them and their tricks.”
“I say to the enemies, if you want to speak about the Iranian nation and claim to express the opinion of the Iranian nation, these people who have gathered here today are the great nation of Iran.”
“Thanks to the Islamic Revolution, our women are free and today the presence of women in universities as faculty members, professors and students and in the social, political and economic fields is prominent.”
“You, the enemies of the Islamic Revolution, have turned women into a tool for increasing profits and capital. In the matter of family, you want to set an index for human civilization, and you introduce one of the ugliest moral movements as an index of civilization. By doing this, you are exterminating the human race and moving against the family and disrupting the institution of the family.”
“We have accepted all of the monitoring activities of the IAEA [International Atomic Energy Agency] and they have announced 15 times that Iran has had no deviations in its nuclear activities, but you have nuclear warheads and nuclear bombs.”
“You formed ISIS and supported it and armed this group and killed the Muslim people, but the Islamic Republic of Iran fought against ISIS in the region with the efforts of its proud men and under the command of its beloved Haj Qassem Soleimani.”
“In the field of fighting terrorism, today we are in the position of the claimant, and you, in the position of the accused, must be accountable to history, the world, and humanity.”
“How much have you wasted human rights everywhere in the region and the world? Seventy years of oppression to the Palestinian people and what oppressions you imposed on the people of Afghanistan. Thirty-five thousand disabled children and many destructions are only the result of your 20-year presence in Afghanistan, and today we are witnessing the continuation of your oppression in Yemen and other countries. You have committed many crimes and actions against human rights even against your own nations.”
“Today, the war is a war of wills. The will of the great nation of Iran, the will of the wise Leader of Islamic Iran and the Islamic world, the will of our armed forces, the will of our men and women is to protect independence and freedom and the Islamic Republic and the proud flag of the Islamic Republic of Iran even more than before. Forty-four years have passed since the victory of the Islamic Revolution and the authority of the Iranian nation, and the authority of this flag will increase day by day.”
“Independence, justice, spirituality, religion, and justice have always been emphasized by the dear nation of Iran. The slogan 'Neither the East Nor the West' is still our slogan.”
“Those who were deceived by the enemy in these riots should know that with the fatherly and wise approach of the wise Leader of the Islamic Revolution and with the pardon and forgiveness that he said, the arms of the nation are open to accept them, and we in the government will also follow the paternal approach that the leader gave.”
“They have understood that the enemy is looking for deception and mischief and is not looking for women's rights, nor freedom, nor life, but is looking to take the independence of the Iranian nation and denying the freedom and peaceful life of the Iranian nation.”
“Our dear nation should open its arms to accept the deceived with the same look as the leader had and said, with a compassionate and generous approach.”
“The enemy should know that if it thinks that it can gain a foothold in the region by his presence, it is very wrong. We consider the security of this region and the Persian Gulf in the absence of Americans and outsiders.”
Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian
In a video message on February 9: “Even though the enemies of the great Iranian nation have been trying, through terrorist sanctions and the failed policy of Iranophobia, to make Iranian youth disappointed. Even though enemies have utilized all available means to avert the progress of the Iranian nation in various fields, we are delighted that we have attained the highest level of progress and development in the Islamic Republic of Iran in all the areas in which the enemies had targeted Iran’s political independence and development. In the government of President Raisi, we all have focused our efforts on implementing a sustainable economic development plan as well as fully neutralizing sanctions.”