WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a statement said that US policy towards Tehran will not change even if Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has resigned.
Zarif, who has been heading the Iranian Foreign Ministry since 2013, earlier in the day announced via Instagram that he was leaving his post. Media reported that Iranian President Hassan Rouhani had accepted the minister’s resignation although Rouhani’s chief of staff denied the reports.
“We note @JZarif’s resignation,” Pompeo said in a Twitter post on Monday. “We’ll see if it sticks… Our policy is unchanged — the regime must behave like a normal country and respect its people.”
Pompeo added that, either way, Rouhani and Zarif are simply front men and that Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei “makes all final decisions.”
A US State Department spokesperson told Sputnik that the United States is closely monitoring reports of Zarif’s resignation.
Iranian foreign minister’s aide told Sputnik on Monday that the ministry’s personnel were unaware of Zarif’s resignation or the possible reasons behind it. The aide also stressed that Zarif’s Instagram account was official and it had not been hacked.
Mahmoud Vaezi, the chief of staff of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, refuted media reports that the country’s leader had accepted Zarif’s resignation.
The Iranian parliament will debate on the resignation of Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif at Tuesday’s session, a source told Sputnik.