We must preserve Gen. Soleimani’s legacy; he was Iran’s border guard/ We’re all Iranians, Iran belongs to everyone; different tastes must be respected/ This land doesn’t belong to a certain taste, faction, opinion
Stating that the martyrdom of Lieutenant General Qasem Soleimani and the loss of a number of citizens in Kerman and the plane crash has saddened the Iranian nation, the President said, "These incidents were very bitter for all of us, but we need to learn from them and use them as opportunities for our country's benefit and national interests.
Speaking at cabinet session on Wednesday morning, President Hassan Rouhani said, "We lost our dear general and we must preserve his legacy today after mourning his loss.
Stating that Martyr Lieutenant General Qasem Soleimani was Iran's border guard, he added, "We are all Iranians and this land belongs to every one of us.
This land and state belongs to all of us and we have common interests, said the President, adding, "Different tastes, opinions and ways of living must be respected.
He also referred to the martyrdom of Lieutenant General Qasem Soleimani and the loss of a number of citizens in Kerman and the plane crash, saying, "Almost all of these three incidents were unexpected for us.
We knew that America is a master criminal, but we did not think they would target another country's guest, who was a great commander of fighting terrorism, he said.
Dr Rouhani also said, "This method may have been unexpected for us and they martyred Gen. Soleimani. Of course, Martyr Soleimani has always been the symbol of bravery and martyrdom.
Losing our dear ones in Kerman was also unexpected and nobody thought that those who attended the funeral of a dear one would join him this soon, said the President.
He also referred to the Ukrainian plane crash and said, "The fact that a jetliner carrying dear people from different nationalities, especially Iranians, was mistakenly shot down, was unexpected for us as well and we did not think such a mistake would happen.
The President of the Islamic Republic of Iran said, "Of course, those who made the mistake are the same people who are making attempts for the country's security.
Our people are ready to stand tall against these incidents, to which the floods in Sistan and Baluchistan in the recent days was added, said Dr Rouhani.
He added, "The martyrdom of General Soleimani was retaliated from the military perspective and our armed forces and the Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution (IRGC) responded to it by targeting Ain al-Assad base with missiles, showing that they will definitely get the response of their crime.
We believe that a major compensation for this crime is for regional peoples to try to expel America from the region, he said, adding, "As the Iraqi Parliament made this attempt, the other regional nations are considering this and this goal might not be short-term, but we have to follow it.
Stating that we must make sure that we pursue the loss of our dear ones in Kerman, he added, "This must become clear. It is true that the crowd were restless and the number of people was overwhelming, but we had to protect them in all of these situations.
He also said that the jetliner crash was an inconsolable grief for all of us, adding, "We must not abandon this case and must compensate for it.
The first thing is to inform people honestly. People's grief will alleviate when they know that we feel responsible for what happened and talk with them honestly, he said.
The President also continued, "The first compensation is that the Judiciary, the Armed Forces and the government all cooperate with each other to closely pursue the issue and conduct a satisfying judicial action.
The final step is to make sure such incidents are unrepeatable; not that it must not happen again, but rather it must be unrepeatable through revisiting the regulations, he said.
The President continued, "The Armed Forces took the first step well by investigating the matter. They have to take the next steps with more coordination and monitoring.
Stating that the next step is not to weaken the forces that we need for ensuring our airspace and country's security, he said, "The correct step is to have more coordination among the Armed Forces.
The President reiterated, "What ultimately needs to happen in all of these unexpected incidents is national cohesion, unity and harmony, and the end result should not be national division.
I urge the Armed Forces and the General Staff to explain to people what sessions and meetings were held since the moment that the incident happened to let people know that they did not want to conceal anything from them, he said.
Dr Rouhani also went on to say, "We have not forgotten the person who has boycotted medicine and medical equipment, killing hundreds of patients in Iran.
Addressing the American leaders, he said, "It was your AWACS that was reporting all flights to Iraq and it you were responsible for the crimes.
Stating that, "I would like to make it clear to the world that insecurity in the region is not to anyone's benefit, he said, "Insecurity in this important region is to the detriment of the world.
The president continued, "This is a sensitive region. Why did you make this region insecure, why did you impose sanctions on the people, why do you bully people, why do you interfere in Iraq, why do you plunder Syrian oil, and why do you interfere in Lebanon and Libya?
In another part of his speech, Dr Rouhani addressed those responsible for elections, saying, "Please do not tell people that there are 17, 170 or 1700 candidates for a single parliamentary seat. 17 candidates from what faction? Only one? This is not an election. It is like having a shop with 2000 of a single item.
"People want diversity," the president added, saying, "Allow all parties and groups to run for the elections. The country cannot be run by a single faction. The country belongs to everyone.
Addressing the US and Europe, the president said, "Europeans say that regarding the Iranian nuclear issue, they have to take a step because Iran has taken the fifth step. The next step you need to take is to return to your commitments. We told you this explicitly, and in recent days I also made it clear to two European leaders that what we have done is reversible for one, and that everything we do regarding the nuclear issue is under the supervision of the IAEA.
Dr Rouhani added, "So you claim that Iran is seeking nuclear weapons and we will not let that happen. Such talk is baseless and illogical; please do not repeat it. We are a country that implements the safeguards and the Additional Protocol, and the Agency's representatives and inspectors are easily present and their cameras are in our enrichment centres. What does this talk mean?
The President also addressed the European parties, "If you take the wrong step, it will be to your detriment. Choose the right path, which is to return to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
"What does Trump do other than breaking agreements and violating international law? he said, adding, "I don't know what this Mr Prime Minister in London thinks by suggesting we must abandon the JCPOA and implement Trump's plan.
Source: Presidency of Islamic Republic of Iran