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Iran issues warning to US and Israel

The Iranian military has warned the US and Israel against threatening the country after President Joe Biden said Washington would “use all elements of its national power” to prevent Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

“The Americans and Zionists know very well the price for using the word ‘force’ against Iran,” Abolfazl Shekarchi, a spokesman for the Iranian Armed Forces, said on Friday, as quoted by local media.

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The official also aimed a personal jibe at Biden, questioning his cognitive capabilities and mocking the US military as a whole, with apparent references to multiple past run-ins between the Iranian and the American forces in the Persian Gulf.

“Biden must have been drowsy when he threatened Iran,” Shekarchi said. “Watch your soldiers’ pants – they might get wet in the Persian Gulf!”

The stern remarks came in response to threats made by Biden during his visit to Israel earlier this week. On Thursday, the US president and Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid signed a joint declaration on the two countries’ continued strategic partnership.

Washington pledged “never to allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon,” confirming it “is prepared to use all elements of its national power to ensure that outcome,” according to the declaration. Tehran, however,  maintains that it has never sought to develop such weaponry.

Biden made additional threats during a press conference alongside Lapid, stating that the US is “not going to wait forever” for Iran to accept its demands and return to the 2015 nuclear deal. The landmark agreement, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), has effectively fallen apart after former President Donald Trump unilaterally pulled out of the deal in 2018, reimposing old and slapping new sanctions on Tehran.

Diplomatic efforts to revive the deal have yielded no result so far, with the US and Iran repeatedly trading blame for the stalled negotiations. While US officials have claimed that Iran has been rolling out new demands during talks, Tehran maintains it is Washington’s responsibility to return to the original agreement and lift all the “snap-back” sanctions in full.

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