Iranian Leaders Promise Brighter Future on New Year’s Day
Iran on Saturday celebrated Nowruz, the Persian New Year’s Day and the most important date on the Iranian calendar. Welcoming the 1,400 year, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei promised a “leap” in production during a live television speech, saying he had reason to believe the worst of Iran’s economic squeeze was behind it. The upcoming June elections will likely usher in “new managers who most probably will be energetic and strongly motivated,” Khamenei said. President Hassan Rouhani, who cannot run for a third term after serving for the past eight years, added that the Islamic Republic will “defeat the sanctions” imposed by the United States in the coming year. US President Joe Biden also addressed the special occasion, wishing the Iranian people “peace, prosperity and understanding” in a special message. The White House over the past few months has looked to re-engage Tehran, demanding it return to full compliance of the 2015 nuclear deal before any American sanctions are lifted. Iran meanwhile wants Washington to first re-enter the agreement, which former President Donald Trump pulled out of in 2018.