Teheran reaches out to stunned US over the Las Vegas massacre
Iran’s Foreign Ministry slams the "heinous" crime that hit the United States and expresses sympathy for its people and the victims’ relatives. This is far different from Trump’s reaction when Iran was hit by two Islamic State attacks in June. Meanwhile, US Defence Secretary Mattis urges the president to stick to the nuclear agreement in the "national interest".
Tehran (AsiaNews/Agencies) – In an atmosphere of tensions and hostility between Iran and the United States over the possible unilateral cancellation by US President Donald Trump of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iran has sent its condolences to the United States over the Las Vegas massacre.
"Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi has offered sympathy to the bereaved families of those killed in the recent deadly shooting in Las Vegas," said a statement published on the Ministry's website. About 59 people were killed and more than 500 were wounded in America’s gambling capital.
Despite long-standing differences between the two countries, Qassemi expressed regret over the 'heinous' crime in which hundreds of civilians were killed and wounded, and sympathy “with the U.S. nation and the relatives of the victims," the statement read.
This is a far cry from what President Trump said following the attacks by the Islamic State group against Iran’s parliament and the Khomeini mausoleum last June.
At the time, the US leader said “that states that sponsor terrorism risk falling victim to the evil they promote”. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif had responded by calling the statement "repugnant" and unlikely to contribute to renewed diplomatic relations 37 years after they were cut.
Meanwhile, US Secretary of Defence Jim Mattis distanced himself from the president over the nuclear deal, urging him to reconsider his position and sticking with it, which he said was in the US national interest.
In the past, Trump described the historic JPCOA reached by his predecessor, Barack Obama, perhaps the latter’s greatest success in foreign affairs, as an embarrassment and the worst deal ever.
At a Senate hearing, Mattis said that “at this point in time, absent indication to the contrary, it is something that the president should consider staying with”.
Iran and the other signatories – China, Russia, France, Britain and Germany – defend the deal as a guarantee of the peaceful, non-military purposes of Tehran's nuclear programme.