What Did President Rouhani Say?

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Social media users have responded to President Trump's angry Twitter threat towards Iranian leader Hassan Rouhani by aping his words to air their own grievances.

Trump in June had threatened sanctions on countries that purchased oil from Iran, which the Iranian leader dismissed.

In response, Donald Trump sent an explosive, all-caps tweet telling Mr Rouhani to "never, ever threaten the United States again" and "be cautious!".

The U.S. decision to reimpose sanctions has hit the Iranian economy hard, with many worldwide firms leaving the country since Trump announced the U.S. withdrawal.

Mr Rouhani earlier said that war with Iran would be "the mother of all wars".

Trump is reimposing sanctions on Iran, which ships most of its oil through the Strait of Hormuz, in an effort to squelch the country's oil sales.

"America is threatening the Iranian people with its sanctions and our government is doing the same with its incompetence and mismanagement", said the self-employed 35-year-old.

Gen. Gholam Hossein Gheibparvar, the chief of the paramilitary Revolutionary Guard's volunteer Basij force, claimed Trump "won't dare" take any military action against Iran. "The United States is with you".

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US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has blasted Iran's religious leaders as "hypocritical holy men" whom he says are more interested in lining their pockets and spreading hardline views overseas than helping out their own cash-strapped citizens. Rouhani had also affirmed that the country will continue to have economic ties with other nations despite the US-imposed sanctions.

Iran "is run by something that resembles the mafia more than a government", Pompeo said, citing what he called Iranian leaders' vast wealth and corruption.

"I would like to praise the strong stance expressed yesterday by President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Pompeo against the Iranian regime's aggression", said Netanyahu at the weekly cabinet meeting.

Germany is calling for restraint amid escalating rhetoric between the leaders of Iran and the United States.

"While it is ultimately up to the Iranian people to determine the direction of their country, the United States, in the spirit of our own freedoms, will support the long-ignored voice of the Iranian people", Pompeo said in the speech in Simi Valley, California.

He said "overthrow, disintegration, boycott and weakening" were the main U.S. policies against Iran.

When a member of the audience asked him whether the Iranian people might gain control of their country in the foreseeable future, Pompeo replied swiftly, "Of course". "This especially goes for our allies in the Middle East and Europe, people who have themselves been terrorised by the violent regime's activity for decades", he said.

Mark Dubowitz, head of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and a leading critic of Iran and the 2015 nuclear deal, called Pompeo's remarks a "powerful indictment of a corrupt and repressive regime", and suggested that US support will help lead to the demise of the theocratic government.

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