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Rouhani vows to end isolation amid fresh US sanctions

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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani vowed to continue his efforts to end the country’s isolation as he was sworn in for a second term, a day after US President Donald Trump signed a bill increasing sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

“We will never accept isolation,” Rouhani told a packed audience of Iranian political and military officials in Tehran on Thursday.

“The nuclear deal is a sign of Iran’s goodwill on the international stage,” he said, referring to the 2015 agreement to curb its atomic programme in exchange for an easing of sanctions.

The US agreed the deal with world powers including  Russia, Britain, France, China and Germany.

Rouhani, a 68-year-old moderate who has faced fierce criticism from conservatives for his efforts to rebuild ties with the West, issued a call for unity.

“I declare once again that with the election concluded, the time for unity and cooperation has begun,” he said.

“I extend my hand to all those who seek the greatness of the country.”

Trump, who during his election campaign last year called 2015’s nuclear agreement “the worst deal ever”, signed on Wednesday new sanctions into law, along with measures against Russia and North Korea.

The agreement had been negotiated by the administration of Barack Obama, former US president.(Agencies)

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