June 20, 2018 / 6:39 PM / a year ago

Iranian people will not give in to U.S. pressure - Rouhani

FILE PHOTO - Iranian President Hassan Rouhani walks to his car after walking out from the airplane upon his arrival at Qingdao Liuting International Airport, Shandong province, China, June 8, 2018. Wang Zhao/Pool via REUTERS

BEIRUT (Reuters) - The Iranian people will not give in to U.S. pressure, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday, as the Islamic Republic faces the reimposition of economic sanctions by Washington.

“The Iranian people will never surrender in the face of the plots and pressure of the American government,” Rouhani said, according to state media.

Rouhani won reelection last year largely on a promise that the economy would improve because of a landmark agreement with major powers under which some sanctions were lifted in exchange for curbs on Iran’s nuclear programme.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the deal threatens to fatally undermine the accord, and the remaining signatories - Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany - are scrambling to preserve it.

The U.S. move has made the pragmatic Rouhani vulnerable to criticism from hardliners who have long opposed any rapprochement with Western governments or companies.

Reporting by Babak Dehghanpisheh; editing by Andrew Roche

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