Rouhani terms US led anti-ISIS coalition "ridiculous"

"Iran will give Iraq any support it requests for combating ISIS, but made a point of saying religious sites must be protected."

September 18, 2014 09:34 am | Updated December 04, 2021 11:27 pm IST - Washington

Iran President Hassan Rouhani. File photo.

Iran President Hassan Rouhani. File photo.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has decried the US-led international coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq (ISIS) describing this as “ridiculous” move and alleged that some of the 40 members of this group had previously supplied the terror group with arms and training.

“Are Americans afraid of giving casualties on the ground in Iraq? Are they afraid of their soldiers being killed in the fight they claim is against terrorism?” Mr. Rouhani told the NBCNews in an interview which was taken in Tehran on Wednesday.

“If they want to use planes and if they want to use unmanned planes so that nobody is injured from the Americans, is it really possible to fight terrorism without any hardship, without any sacrifice? Is it possible to reach a big goal without that? In all regional and international issues, the victorious one is the one who is ready to do sacrifice,” Mr. Rouhani said.

It is necessary for airstrikes in some conditions and some circumstances, he said.

“However, air strikes should take place with the permission of the people of that country and the government of that country,” the Iranian President said in his interview to the major American television network.

Responding to questions, Mr. Rouhani said the brutal murder of two American journalist and one British national by ISIS is against the tenants of Islam.

“They want to kill humanity,” he said.

“And from the viewpoint of the Islamic tenets and culture, killing an innocent people equals the killing of the whole humanity. And therefore, the killing and beheading of innocent people in fact is a matter of shame for them and it’s the matter of concern and sorrow for all the human and all the mankind,” Mr. Rouhani told the NBC News in his interview.

According to the NBC News , Mr. Rouhani alleged that many members of the US-led coalition had helped ISIS with weapons and training.

But he declined to name the countries.

Mr. Rouhani said Iran will give Iraq any support it requests for combating ISIS, but made a point of saying religious sites must be protected.

“When we say the red line we mean the red line. It means we will not allow Baghdad to be occupied by the terrorists or the religious sites such as Karbala or Najaf be occupied by the terrorists,” he said.

The Iranian President said he believes that the latest round of nuclear talks can still lead to a resolution.

“Maybe the time could be arguable, either today or tomorrow. However, we have no doubt that the only solution to the nuclear issue goes through negotiation,” he said.

Mr. Rouhani also called for close relationship between US and Iran.

“A closer contact and relationship would also be beneficial for the American state person, and they can open new ways for the American politicians. We have to look at future more than the past,” he told the NBC News .

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