President Rouhani made the remarks while addressing a ceremony held in Tehran Saturday morning to mark the beginning of the Sacred Defense Week, a nationwide event held annually to remeber courageous sacrifices of the Iranian nation and Armed forces during eight years of imposed war against Iran by Iraq's dictator Saddam Hussein's Ba'ath regime in 1980.
“No power in the world and none of the international organizations did stand against Saddam’s war crimes [against Iranians] and aggression, and this taught us an important lesson,” Rouhani said.
What has happened after the September 22, 1980, was highly important from several points, said the President.
“The first point is that Iran was not the beginner of the war, Iran did not make any aggression and did not intend to do so against any country. It only defended its dignity, people and soil,” he added.
Although Iraq under the leadership of Saddam Hussein and indifferent to the international regulations did use chemical weapons against the Iranian people, none of the world powers or bodies condemned the war crimes committed by the Iraqis at that time, President Rouhani said.
Recalling violation of the 1975 Algiers Agreement by the then Iraqi president which led to the beginning of the eight years of imposed war against Iran, President Rouhani said the same has happened when [US President Donald] Trump unilaterally withdrew from the Iran Deal on May 8, 2018.
The 1975 Algiers Agreement (commonly known as the Algiers Accord), was signed between the then officials of Iran and Iraq to settle border disputes. On 17 September 1980, Iraq abolished the treaty but under international law, one nation cannot unilaterally reject a previously ratified treaty.
Iraq’s eight years of imposed war gave Iran 230,000 martyrs and 600,000 war-disabled while 43,000 Iranians were kept captive by the Iraqi forces and many others have gone missing.
The US President Donald Trump pulled out Washington from the landmark 2015 nuclear deal which was beneficial to all parties both in the world and the region, the president noted.
The imposed war started “apparently because Saddam did not believe that the 1975 treaty was good for him or Iraq, but in reality he was after annihilation of the Islamic Revolution and the Islamic system. This is like what Trump did in May,” said the Iranian president.
During the past two years, many plots were hatched to goad Iran into leaving the 2015 nuclear deal in order to make Tehran legally and politically responsible for its aftermath, the president added.
Trump thought in vein that Iran will withdraw from the deal after US May 8 withdrawal, so that he could refer the case to the United Nations (UN) Security Council, President Rouhani said adding, “Today, Iran is the winner spiritually, politically and legally because no world countries, except two detested regional regimes, are in support of the US move.”
President Rouhani added that Iran’s measure to lodge a complaint against US in the International Court of Justice (ICJ) has made Washington angry.
In late August, ICJ heard Iran’s lawsuit through which Tehran voiced that Washington's measure to re-impose sanctions against Tehran is against the US international commitments based on a 1955 treaty between Iran and the US which entered into force in 1957.
Commenting on the issue, the president said that Iran will be the winner despite whatever verdict the ICJ reaches.
He went on to say that Iran has always respected the UN Security Council and been committed to the international laws.
Referring to the US economic and psychological war against Iran, President Rouhani said that the East and the West have stood by Iran presently despite their support for Iraq’s Saddam 38 years ago.
As for Iran’s missile program, the president said, “Tehran will never give up developing its defense capabilities.”
“If they are angry with Iran’s missiles, it means that today, our most effective weapon is our missile,” he said.
Referring to Iran’s presence in the international waters, President Rouhani said that the Iranian ships safeguard the Persian Gulf, Sea of Oman, Indian Ocean and Bab-el-Mandeb regions.
Also, the great Iranian nation is in the heart of the people of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen, he said.
“Iran is a great effective country in the Middle East that will not keep silent on aggression against the oppressed nations in the region,” President Rouhani stressed.
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