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Rouhani: Iran Will Continue Oil Exports, Despite U.S. Sanctions

Iranian President Hassan Rohani

Iran will continue to export oil despite increasing pressure by Washington, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said in a speech broadcast live by state TV on April 30.

"In future months, the Americans themselves will see that we will continue our oil exports,” Rouhani said.

"America's decision that Iran's oil exports must reach zero is a wrong and mistaken decision, and we won't let this decision be executed and operational,” the president said.

Rouhani's remarks came days after Washington announced that it had decided not to renew waivers in May allowing importers to buy Iranian oil without facing U.S. sanctions.

"This decision is intended to bring Iran's oil exports to zero, denying the regime its principal source of revenue," the White House said in a statement on April 21.

The decision means sanctions waivers for five nations, including China, India, Japan, South Korea, and Turkey won't be renewed when they expire on May 2.

The announcement sparked condemnations in Tehran, with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei saying the elimination of the waivers was a "hostile measure" that "won't be left without a response."

Washington has ramped up sanctions on Iran since President Donald Trump withdrew from its 2015 nuclear accord with world powers last year.

The 2015 Iran nuclear deal with six world powers -- Britain, China, France, Russia, the United States, and Germany -- had given Tehran sanctions relief in exchange for curbing its nuclear program and ensuring it is not trying to produce nuclear weapons.

Trump says the Iran nuclear deal was “fatally flawed” because it did not address Iran’s ballistic-missile program or Tehran’s alleged state sponsorship of terrorism.

Earlier this month, a U.S. official said that U.S. sanctions have denied Tehran more than $10 billion in oil revenue.

Based on reporting by Reuters and