Trump favourite to win US election, says Iran Foreign Minister Zarif

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: Jun 14, 2020, 08:08 AM(IST)

File photo of Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif. Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

Tension between Washington and Tehran has escalated since 2018, when U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew from Iran's 2015 nuclear deal with six world powers and reimposed crippling sanctions targeting particularly its vital oil industry.

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Saturday that US President Donald Trump still has a good chance of being re-elected.

Despite Trump's declining support in recent months, Trump is likely to win thanks to his strong support base, he said.

"The biggest mistake in human sciences is to predict, especially in fluid and grave conditions. But allow me to venture a prediction that Mr Trump's re-election chances are still more that 50%," Zarif said in an interview. "Of course his chances have seriously decreased compared to four to five months ago."

"But Mr Trump has a 30-35% base that has not moved and, as long as this base does not move, there is still a chance of his re-election," Zarif said in the live interview on Instagram with Iranian journalist Farid Modarresi, the first of its kind with a senior official of the Islamic Republic.

Tension between Washington and Tehran has escalated since 2018, when U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew from Iran's 2015 nuclear deal with six world powers and reimposed crippling sanctions targeting particularly its vital oil industry.

Trump said earlier this month that Iranian leaders would be wrong if they expected his defeat in the November elections. Recent opinion polls have seen President Donald Trump lose ground to Democrat Joe Biden.

"Don’t wait until after U.S. Election to make the Big deal. I’m going to win. You’ll make a better deal now!," Trump tweeted, addressing Iran.

Iran's Foreign Ministry responded that Iran would not base its policies on internal U.S. matters, such as elections.

Zarif said in the interview that Trump himself had likely reached the conclusion that his policies of "maximum pressure" against Iran had failed.

"I don't think Trump believes anymore in talk that the Islamic Republic is about to collapse," Zarif said. "But he keeps repeating his mistakes. It seems that they (U.S. officials) know they have committed errors but don't know how to correct them."

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