London- During a march held in Tehran on Friday to mark the anniversary of the 1979 Islamic revolution, Iranian regime officials escalated the rhetoric against the new U.S. administration by pledging to protect their “missile capacity.”
Speaking from Azadi Square as supporters chanted “Death to America,” Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani vowed to make some inexperienced figures in the region and America that are threatening Iran, be sorry.
“They should know that the language of threats has never worked with Iran. They should learn to respect Iran and Iranians […] We will strongly confront any warmongering policies.”
The Iranian president said the large turnout at Friday’s march “is a response to false remarks by the new rulers in the White House as the people are telling the world through their presence that the Iranian people must be spoken to with respect.”
A closing statement issued at the end of the ceremony asserted that “the U.S. is the first enemy of the nation.”
The statement said “deterrence power, national security, and missile capabilities constitute red lines for the system; we believe any intervention to address missile capabilities is unconventional and we refuse any interference in Iran’s internal affairs.”
Rouhani’s remarks came after Trump said he had put Iran “on notice” in reaction to a Jan. 29 missile test and had imposed sanctions on a new list of individuals and entities.
During Friday’s march, Iranians were seen carrying banners reading: “Death to America, Death to Israel, Death to Britain.”
The crowd carried mocking photos of Trump, Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu and British Prime Minister Theresa May. The crowd also burned U.S. and Israeli flags in the presence of Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force chief Qassem Soleimani.
In Washington, the European Union’s foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, said on Friday she was reassured during meetings with Trump’s administration that it was committed to the full implementation of the Iran nuclear deal.