Rouhani Sworn in for 2nd Term as Iran President
Ayatollah Khamenei advised the 68-year-old chief executive to
show greater tolerance for opposing voices.
Hassan Rouhani was sworn in as Iran’s 12th president in the capital Tehran
in the presence of the country’s high-ranking officials as well as leaders
and senior politicians from around the world.
The inauguration ceremony opened at the Parliament building on Saturday
(August 5) with delegates from more than 100 countries, including several
heads of state, partaking in it.
Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani kicked off the ceremony by welcoming all the
participants, particularly the foreign dignitaries. He said the
participation of more than 72 percent of the Iranian people in the May
presidential election showed that they are dedicated to the Islamic
The top Iranian lawmaker added that the Parliament would support any effort
by the next government to remove obstacles in the way of increasing national
production and foreign and domestic investment.
Iran Won’t Sit Idle in Face of Non-Compliance with JCPOA
Rouhani then took the oath of office and addressed the session.
He thanked world leaders and dignitaries for taking part in the swearing-in
ceremony. He said the Iranian nation has made great sacrifices in the path
of safeguarding freedom and the rule of law, adding that Iranians have put
their trust in the Islamic establishment.
He vowed to follow the Iranian nation’s demands and emphasized that his
government is ready to defend the country’s national interests. He also said
the Iranian government has taken great steps to improve the nation’s health,
adding that the level of education and health in Iran is better than many
Iran, however, is still facing big challenges including water shortage and
unemployment, he noted. Rouhani stressed the importance of a strong economy
and said the next government eyes economic reforms. He described unity as a
key factor behind the Iranian nation’s success and added that Tehran seeks
to boost ties with neighboring countries.
The chief executive said regional problems could be solved only through
dialogue and cooperation and invited countries in the region to join
political initiatives to end the crisis in Yemen.
He stressed the importance of increasing dialogue among governments and
nations in order to repel the present “dangerous and complicated” threats.
“Increasing constructive interaction with world countries, deepening bonds
with neighboring and regional countries and boosting the level of
cooperation with friendly countries are not only a wise choice but a
necessity,” Rouhani said.
He warned of plots by foreign powers pursuing their self-interests in
regional issues, saying they are creating chaos and instability in the
Rouhani also warned those present that Washington was trying to sabotage the
nuclear accord. Trump’s aggression, said the President, may come to a sticky
end: “Those who want to tear up the nuclear deal should know that they will
be ripping up their own political life.”
“The US’s repeated violations of its commitments and the new sanctions it
imposed on Iran have left a negative impact on public opinion here and this
will put the nuclear agreement at risk. Iran would not be the first to pull
out of the nuclear deal, but it will not remain silent about the US
violations,” he said.
Earlier, in a meeting with Federica Mogherini, the Iranian President praised
the high European representation saying that it showed many Western states
were prepared to build bridges with his country despite American pressure.
Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif also reportedly said in the meeting:
“Trump is trying to destroy the nuclear accord at Iran’s expense, and Europe
should be conscious of this.”
After Rouhani’s speech, Larijani wrapped up the session by urging Rouhani to
present his Cabinet choices to the Parliament at the earliest for their
confirmation hearings to be held.
Leader Endorses Rouhani as Iran’s President
Resistance Economy is a concept aimed at weaning the country of
heavy dependence on oil revenues by boosting production and
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei formally endorsed
Rouhani as President, paving the way for him to take office for a second
term as the head of Iran’s 12th administration.
During a ceremony on Thursday (August 3), Ayatollah Khamenei gave his
official approval for the president-elect by giving him a decree to assign
him his duties.
In May, Rouhani won re-election in a landslide after securing 57 percent of
the votes and defeating his main contender Ebrahim Raeisi, the current
custodian of the Holy Shrine of Imam Reza.
Under Iran’s election law, the president-elect is required to gain the
Leader’s official approval before being sworn in before the Parliament (Majlis).
Through this process, called Tanfiz (validation), the Leader affirms the
outcome of the presidential election.
During August 3 ceremony, Ayatollah Mohammad Mohammadi-Golpayegani, the head
of Ayatollah Khamenei’s office, read out the decree issued by the Leader to
Sanctions Helped Iran’s Growth
Addressing the ceremony, the Leader hailed the election process as the
symbol of democracy in post-Revolution Iran.
Prior to the 1979 Islamic Revolution, people were sidelined and prevented
from playing a role in running the country’s affairs, Ayatollah Khamenei
The Leader urged the new administration to focus its efforts on
“establishing justice, siding with the poor and implementing the rules of
pure Islam,” adding that authorities should also work to strengthen
Ayatollah Khamenei further said Iranian officials have managed to cooperate
with the world despite enemy attempts to isolate the nation. He also called
for “extensive interactions with the world as well as broad relations with
nations and governments.”
The sanctions imposed on Iran helped the country to grow powerful and
self-reliant as the nation turned to the resources and capabilities at home,
“The sanctions, of course, caused problems for the country, but [made us]
open our eyes to our own capabilities,” the Leader said. “We used all the
enmities to our own benefit.”
He also outlined priorities for President Rouhani in his second term in
office, urging him to tackle economic challenges as his foremost priority to
ease the livelihood problems of people.
Ayatollah Khamenei further asked the executive branch to “stand strongly
against any domination” by hegemonic powers.
The endorsement ceremony was televised live, with top officials, military
commanders and foreign ambassadors in attendance.
Rouhani earned a 24-million-vote mandate in the presidential poll, winning
by an emphatic 57% over his main rival, principlist Ebrahim Raeisi.
Ayatollah Khamenei advised the 68-year-old chief executive to show greater
tolerance for opposing voices.
“You should allow opponents to criticize, if they have critical views. Tasks
are heavy and our shortcomings are not few in number,” he said.
The Leader said the need for greater international engagement should not
lead officials to forget hostility of Iran’s adversaries that are bent on
destroying the country.
He stressed that Iran should continue to stand powerful in the face of its
enemies, particularly the US, which he described as “the most aggressive and
shameless” enemy that “uses any excuse to make a fuss” against Iran.
“Four decades of international relations show us that the cost of
surrendering to bullying powers surpasses that of standing up against them,”
The endorsement ceremony came less than 24 hours after US President Donald
Trump signed a Congress bill slapping a full-fledged package of sanctions on
Iran, the first after the July 2015 nuclear deal.
In his endorsement decree, the Leader said, “The valorous and courageous
nation will not leave the servants of the country alone in hard times and in
the face of aggression and greed of arrogant powers.”
12th Administration Set to Fight Poverty
Rouhani also delivered a speech after receiving the endorsement decree,
elaborating on his future plans as the chief executive.
He said: “Social justice” and “poverty alleviation” were among the main
ideals of the Islamic establishment, adding that the eradication of absolute
poverty is one of the objectives of his administration.
The administration, he said, seeks to set the stage for people to exercise
their rights, adding that his cabinet would make efforts to “uproot poverty
and corruption, contain inflation and facilitate economic growth.”
Rouhani further called for more investment and access to advanced
technologies, stressing that sustainable development is not achievable
without reliable plans.
Iran paid the price for its independence and will stand against enemy
attempts to isolate the nation, he added, stressing, “We will never accept
He said the country has stood against the “toughest of the sanctions” by
taking advantage of a combination of its “diplomatic power” and “deterrence
The President also pointed to the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world
powers and said “the JCPOA has shown Iran’s goodwill to engage in
constructive and effective interactions on the international stage.”
Economy Tops Agenda
Elaborating on his future plans in the ceremony, Rouhani described his main
agenda as “increasing production and employment”, saying his government’s
economic plan follows Resistance Economy principles to bring about an
Resistance Economy is a concept aimed at weaning the country of heavy
dependence on oil revenues by boosting production and productivity.
In his first term, Rouhani said, his team managed to take big steps toward
energizing the economy and reducing poverty by “restoring economic
stability” and “curbing inflation”, but a lot more needs to be done before
the economic situation improves to a level that befits the Iranian nation.
“Eliminating poverty lies in creating jobs and this needs massive investment
and access to [foreign] markets and high tech,” he said.
Rouhani reiterated that his second government will insist on broadening
“constructive engagement” with the international community more than before.
The moderate cleric appealed for unity, saying people have renewed their
allegiance with the system by their strong participation in the presidential
vote and “the burden of responsibility is now on our shoulders”.
“I declare once again that with the conclusion of the election, the time for
unity and cooperation has begun,” he said.
“I extend my hand to all those who seek the greatness of the country.”
US Attempts to Isolate Iran Failing!
The massive turnout of foreign dignitaries in the inauguration ceremony
displayed the failure of Iranophobic practices and showed how world
countries respect Iran and are eager to have relations with it.
The presence of roughly 500 foreign guests, including 130 high-ranking
officials from 105 countries, in the inauguration ceremony was “indicative
of the respect that governments and nations have for the Iranian nation,”
Speaker Larijani said at the Parliament (August 8).
“The passionate turnout at the President’s inauguration ceremony indicates
that the project aimed at isolating Iran is void and does not go anywhere,
and that different countries are interested in having relations with the
Islamic Republic,” he added.
The high level of participation, he said, came in spite of constant
propagandizing against the Islamic Republic and the massive amounts of money
spent on that practice.
The United States’ aggressive attempts to place Iran under economic pressure
were also proven null by the massive turnout of the foreign representatives,
which indicated international interest in business ties with Tehran,
The respect accorded to Iran by various countries was an achievement in
terms of how national interests were served, Larijani said.
Among the VIPs at the inauguration ceremony were the European Union (EU)’s
top diplomat Federica Mogherini; Britain’s Minister of State for the Middle
East and North Africa Alistair Burt; Danish Deputy Foreign Minister Jonas
Bering Liisberg; Italian Deputy Foreign Minister Vincenzo Amendola; Austrian
Deputy Parliament Speaker Karlheinz Kopf; and the Netherlands’ former prime
minister Wim Kok.
Other senior guests included Iraqi President Fuad Massoum; Afghan President
Ashraf Ghani; Syrian Prime Minister Imad Khamis; Lebanese Parliament Speaker
Nabih Berri; the president of the Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly
of North Korea, Kim Yong-nam; South Korean Parliament Speaker Chung Sye-kyun;
South Africa’s Minister of State Security David Mahlobo; and Cuba’s Vice
President Ulises Rosales del Toro.
Earlier, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi said the high
level of foreign participation in the President’s inauguration ceremony
signified “the world’s new approach toward Iran.”
The turnout was “a clear signal of the defeat of the policy of Iranophobia,”
Many of the delegations which travelled to Tehran were, however, looking at
trade possibilities with the Iranian market opening up following the
relaxing of sanctions. Lord Lamont of Lerwick, a long-time campaigner for
improving relations with Tehran and now the UK’s trade envoy to Iran,
arrived along with the MP Richard Bacon, the vice-chairman of the
Britain-Iran Parliamentary Friendship Group.
The US manufacturer Boeing has signed an $8bn (£6.1bn) deal to sell 80 jets
to Iran Air and 30 more to another carrier, Aseman Airlines while its
European rival Airbus has an agreement to supply another 100 planes to Iran.
France’s Total is in a $2bn agreement to develop a gas field and Britain’s
General Electric is considering a number of highly lucrative business
A Message for Trump!
But the shadow of Donald Trump remains as Iran strives to open up for
business. The US stipulation on the nuclear deal means the President has to
certify that Tehran is complying with the agreement every 90 days. Trump,
who had promised to tear up the agreement during his election campaign,
grudgingly signed off the first certification after the State Department
failed to find any breaches but he complained that the Iranians “are not
living up to the spirit of the agreement” while failing to explain what this
actually means. His administration, he says, is carrying out a
“comprehensive review of Iran policy”.
That is still under way as the US administration was again forced to issue
the second certification last week that Iran was still complying with its
commitments. But, at the same time, Trump said in an interview: “If it was
up to me, I would have had them non-compliant 180 days ago.” Asked whether
he expected Iran to be non-compliant next time, he declared: “Yes,
personally I do.”
remains, theoretically, even if the US pulls out, with the five other
signatories, Russia, China, Germany, France and Britain, all saying that
they would continue with it. But companies and financial institutions are
acutely wary of falling foul of US sanctions and incurring swinging