'Don't play with lion's tail' - Iran in US war threat
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani yesterday cautioned US President Donald Trump about pursuing hostile policies against Tehran, saying "America should know... war with Iran is the mother of all wars," but he did not rule out peace between the two countries, either.
Iran faces looming sanctions after Mr Trump's decision to withdraw the US from a 2015 international deal over Iran's nuclear programme.
Addressing a gathering of Iranian diplomats, Mr Rouhani said: "Mr Trump, don't play with the lion's tail, this would only lead to regret," the state new agency 'IRNA' reported.
"America should know that peace with Iran is the mother of all peace, and war with Iran is the mother of all wars," Mr Rouhani said, leaving open the possibility of peace between the two countries which have been at odds since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
"You are not in a position to incite the Iranian nation against Iran's security and interests," he added, in an apparent reference to reported efforts by Washington to destabilise Iran's Islamic government.
Mr Rouhani scoffed at Mr Trump's threat to halt Iranian oil exports and said Iran has a dominant position in the Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz, a major oil shipping waterway.