Iran calls Pompeo 'loudspeaker for bullying'

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks about human rights in Iran, at the State Department in Washington on Thursday. — AFP
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks about human rights in Iran, at the State Department in Washington on Thursday. — AFP

TEHRAN — Iran on Friday called US foreign policy "delusional" and its chief diplomat a "loudspeaker for bullying, deceit and disdain", a day after Washington announced new sanctions against Tehran.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, announcing the measures against two Iranian judges on Thursday, said Washington would also restrict visas for Iranian officials.

"They will not achieve anything this way," Iran's Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Mousavi said in a statement.

"They have shown nothing to America's people and the world other than an inefficient, delusional, static and bullying foreign policy."

President Donald Trump's administration has already ended the vast majority of new visas for Iranians.

Washington also reimposed unilateral sanctions on Iran's oil and banking sectors after withdrawing from the multilateral 2015 nuclear deal last year and imposing a strategy of "maximum pressure".

Pompeo said the new measures were "for the sake of human dignity" and that the United States stands with the Iranian people.

Mousavi said former Central Intelligence Agency chief Pompeo was unfit to be in the "civilized field" of diplomacy.

"Foreign ministers are usually the heralds of peace, friendship, dialogue and respect while Mr. Pompeo is a loudspeaker for bullying, deceit and disdain," he said.

Pompeo said the visa restrictions, would apply to Iranian officials and their families.

Announcing the sanctions, he condemned Iranian authorities over a crackdown against protests sparked by fuel price hikes.

Amnesty International says more than 300 people died during the unrest.

Iran, which blamed the unrest on "rioters" and its enemies, has dismissed such figures as "utter lies". — AFP