Iran's Raisi: Our Ballistic Missile Program Is Non-negotiable

Speaking publicly for the first time since being voted in as Iran's president, Ebrahim Raisi added the U.S. must rejoin the 2015 nuclear deal and lift all sanctions on Iran

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Iran's President-elect Ebrahim Raisi in Tehran, today
Iran's President-elect Ebrahim Raisi in Tehran, todayCredit: WANA NEWS AGENCY/Reuters

Iranian President-Elect Ebrahim Raisi said the regime's ballistic missile program is "not negotiable" in his first news conference since his victory in Friday's election.

Iran's president-elect, voted in to replace Hassan Rohani by a landslide on Saturday, added that he's not also willing to negotiate over its support of regional militias.

Raisi added that his country's foreign policy will not be limited by the 2015 nuclear agreement.

"Our foreign policy will not be limited to the nuclear deal," Raisi said in Tehran. "We will have interaction with the world."

"We will not tie the Iranian people's interests to the nuclear deal."

Raisi added that the U.S. is obligated to lift all sanctions imposed on Tehran, and the world power should immediately return to the nuclear deal.

When asked whether he'd meet with U.S. President Joe Biden, Raisi simply said "no."

Raisi also called himself “a defender of human rights” after being asked directly about his involvement in the 1988 mass executions of some 5,000 people.

Raisi was part of a so-called “death panel” that sentenced political prisoners to death at the end of the 1980s Iran-Iraq war.

On Saturday Judge Ebrahim Raisi won Iran's presidential election in a vote that appeared to see the lowest turnout in the Islamic Republic's history, Iranian state media reported.

Raisi won 17.8 million votes, over half of the 28 million votes on Friday, which constitutes just over half of the country's 59 million eligible voters.

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