Iran Reacts to Trump Speech

September 25, 2017

Iranian officials reacted angrily to President Donald Trump’s address to the U.N. General Assembly. On September 19, he referred to the Islamic Republic as a “murderous regime” and a “corrupt dictatorship” posing as a democracy. The following are reactions from Iran.


President Hassan Rouhani

“The ignorant, absurd and hateful rhetoric, filled with ridiculously baseless allegations, that was uttered before this august body yesterday, was not only unfit to be heard at the United Nations - which was established to promote peace and respect between nations - but indeed contradicted the demands of our nations from this world body to bring governments together to combat war and terror.”


—Sept. 20, 2017, in his address to the U.N. General Assembly

Trump “made big mistakes in this speech. There were baseless and unfounded accusations. It wasn’t worthy of the United Nations or an individual who sees himself as the president of a country.”

—Sept. 21, 2017, at a press conference in New York City

“Mr. Trump was extremely offensive to the people of Iran, and, before anything, we are waiting for Mr. Trump to issue an apology to the people of Iran.”

—Sept. 20, 2017, at a press conference in New York City

“We will increase our military power as a deterrent. We will strengthen our missile capabilities... We will not seek permission from anyone to defend our country.”

—Sept. 22, 2017, in a speech broadcast on state television


Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

“This speech was not a sign of power but rather a sign of anger, frustration and stupidity.”

—Sept. 21, 2017, during a meeting with the Assembly of Experts


Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif

“Trump’s shameless and ignorant remarks, in which he ignored Iran’s fight against terrorism, displays his lack of knowledge and unawareness,”

—Sept. 19, 2017, in remarks reported by Fars News Agency


Trump’s speech was “absurd.”

“By definition, a deal is not perfect, because in any deal you have to give and take… otherwise you won’t have a deal”

“Why should we discuss an addendum? If you want to have an addendum, there has to be an addendum on everything.”

—Sept. 21, 2017, in an interview with The New York Times


Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Major General Ali Jafari

“With the successive crushing defeats the Americans have suffered in the region especially in the face of Iran, it is natural that their nervous system and coherence of thought have been upset."

—Sept. 20, 2017, in reaction to Trump’s speech at the UN General Assembly


Supreme National Security Council Secretary Ali Shamkhani

“No signatory to the JCPOA can balk at the accepted mechanisms of this international agreement under false or illegal pretexts.”

—Sept. 20, 2017, according to Press TV


Deputy Chief of Staff of Iran’s Armed Forces Brigadier Genral Massoud Jazayeri

Trump’s U.N. speech revealed the “weakness and desperation of an administration suffering from melancholia in its dream of being a superpower."

—Sept. 20, 2017, according to Press TV


Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri

“Trump’s words were not suitable for a head of state, it was a statement against peace, freedom and democracy and for the promotion of extremism and violence.”

“Trump’s contradictory and irrational speech was caused by muddling in the mind, strategy and politics.”

—Sept. 20, 2017, in two tweets


Emily Salwen, a research assistant at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, contributed to this roundup.