President Donald Trump said Iran’s future as a country is in doubt amid public discontent with the Islamic Republic.
Trump told reporters in the Oval Office on Wednesday that Iran is in “total turmoil” and “now they are just worrying about their own survival as a country.”
The president spoke during a meeting with Kuwait’s emir, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmed al-Sabah, echoing comments in a Bloomberg interview last week saying the Iranian regime may collapse because of his administration’s policies.
“When I came into here, it was a question of when would they take over the Middle East,” Trump said Thursday of Iran in the Bloomberg interview. “Now it’s a question of will they survive. It’s a big difference in one and a half years.”
Trump — encouraged by Iran’s regional foes — pulled the U.S. from the 2015 international nuclear accord in May, accusing the Islamic Republic of threatening Middle East security as it expands its regional influence. He reimposed sanctions on Iran in August, with Iran’s vital oil industry due to face penalties beginning in November.
Inflation in Iran has surged and its currency weakened, placing added pressure on President Hassan Rouhani as he tries to navigate through the crisis.
© 2018 Bloomberg News
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