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White House tries to retract Biden’s regime change remark on Iran

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
File photo of US National Security Council spokesman John Kirby

A senior White House official has tried to retract US President Joe Biden’s recent prying remarks about “freeing Iran” that suggested a threat to push for regime change in the country, saying his impulsive comments were not meant as a policy statement. 

White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby claimed during a Friday press briefing that Biden’s assertion a day earlier that “we’re going to free Iran” was meant to express “our solidarity with the protesters,” referring to violent, foreign-sponsored rioters that have waged deadly attacks on law-enforcement personnel, ordinary citizens as well as public and private properties for the past 45 days.

“Don’t worry, we’re going to free Iran. They’re going to free themselves pretty soon,” Biden blurted out at a fundraising party in California for the Democratic Party candidates ahead of the November 8 midterm elections.

Asked if Biden’s remarks reflected Washington’s assessment that the Iranian government is near collapse, Kirby admitted, “We have no indication of that.”

Raeisi: 'Iran was freed 43 years ago'

Speaking on Friday, Iran’s President Ebrahim Raeisi blasted Biden’s intrusive assertion by reminding the controversial US president that Iranians, in fact, freed themselves from the American yoke 43 years ago by their Islamic Revolution in 1979 that toppled the brutal, US-installed monarch at the time.

“Iran was freed 43 years ago and is determined not to be occupied by you, and we will never be (your) milking cows,” Raeisi underlined while addressing a massive crowd of demonstrators commemorating the anniversary of the takeover of the US embassy in Tehran, which became known as the Den of Espionage after it was proved that the embassy staff was engaged in sowing plots to overthrow the nascent Islamic Republic.

Pointing to recent riots that caused mayhem across the country, the Iranian president said, “Rabble-rousing and attempts to disrupt the country are different from protests, and rioters and those who create insecurity must be dealt with decisively.”

“Today, Iran and our various cities are safe. The Americans and our enemies sought to make the country insecure by implementing examples of their work in Libya and Syria, but they achieved nothing except failure,” he then emphasized.

The Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has also condemned the role of the US and its Western and regional allies in the recent riots across Iran, insisting that they used their intelligence agencies, media capacity and the internet as well as their past experiences to harm the Iranian nation.

“The enemy, namely the United States, the Zionist regime, some insidious and malicious European powers and some groups, came to the field with all of their capabilities,” the leader further clarified.

Tehran has fiercely censured US and its Western allies for instigating the recent pockets of riots across Iran that began in mid-September purportedly over the accidental death of a young woman while attending a workshop provided by law-enforcement officers for the proper observance of the hijab (Islamic headdress) in public places.

Last week, Iran’s Intelligence Ministry declared that the United States and the United Kingdom were “directly” involved in the recent riots, adding that dozens of terrorists affiliated with the Zionist regime and anti-revolution groups have also been detained in the unrest.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian also slammed Biden’s remarks, saying that the White House “has increasingly promoted violence and terror in the recent riots,” demanding from Washington “stop hypocritical behavior.”

This is not the first time Biden’s aides have sought to “clarify” their boss’s remarks. Speaking about Russian President Vladimir Putin in March, Biden said “For God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power,” which was widely interpreted as calling for regime change in Russia – only for this to be denied by the State Department and White House aides.

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