Ayatollah Ali Khamenei attends a meeting with environmental officials and activists in Tehran. File Picture: AFP/HO/IRANIAN SUPREME LEADER'S WEBSITE
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei attends a meeting with environmental officials and activists in Tehran. File Picture: AFP/HO/IRANIAN SUPREME LEADER'S WEBSITE

Tehran -Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei vowed on Thursday "never" to allow the Islamic republic to bow to the demands of its enemies.

At a time of increased tension between Tehran and Washington, he said: "To entertain the idea, as desired by the enemy, that the only solution is to hand ourselves over to the enemy, is the worst act of treason towards the Iranian nation.

Khamenei was addressing tens of thousands of members of the Basij, an Islamic volunteer militia, broadcast live on state television. For Iran’s clerical establishment, enemy means firstly the US, which is dubbed the "Great Satan".

Khamenei played down the effects of economic sanctions reimposed on Iran by the US in August after Washington pulled out of the 2015 nuclear accord between Tehran and world powers. "Our national economy can overcome the sanctions, and, with the help of God, we will overcome them, and this defeat will signal the defeat of America and a new slap for America from the Iranian nation," he said.

On Wednesday, Tehran hailed its "victory" after the International Court of Justice ruled that sanctions reimposed after President Donald Trump pulled out of a nuclear deal put Iranian lives at risk.

Iran’s relations with the US were severed in the aftermath of Iran’s 1979 Islamic revolution.

AFP