0126 GMT March 02, 2021
In a meeting on Monday, members of the Assembly of Experts also reelected Ayatollah Mohammad Ali Movahedi Kermani as the first deputy, and Ebrahim Raeisi, who is also the head of the Judiciary, as the second deputy of the assembly, Press TV reported.
Speaking at the event, Ayatollah Jannati paid homage to Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, who was assassinated during a US strike in Iraq on January 3, 2020, directly ordered by former US president Donald Trump.
“May God damn Trump and America and those who played a role in the assassination of this beloved martyr and made a nation suffer his loss,” he said.
The Americans did not dare respond to Iran’s attack against Ain al-Asad Air Base in western Iraq, where US forces were stationed, said Ayatollah Jannati, who is also the head of the Guardian Council, an oversight body which examines the qualifications of candidates in elections.
Five days after the assassination of General Soleimani, who was in Baghdad on an official visit at the time, Iran retaliated by firing dozens of missiles at Ain al-Asad Air Base in Al-Anbar Governorate, western Iraq, as well as another US air base in Erbil, declaring that the attacks were part of its promised “tough revenge” for the assassination.
Trump, who had threatened to attack Iran’s positions in case of any attack by the Islamic Republic, backed down after Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) went on with the retaliation, which turned out to be a painful humiliation for him and his hawkish administration.
“Trump disgraced America and showed that they are not committed to anything,” Ayatollah Jannati said.
He noted that while the United States’ power is declining and coming to an end, Iran is gaining strength “and the future is ours”.
“Our strength comes from the strength of God, and the weakness of America is beyond our imagination,” he said, adding, “Today, they [American rulers] are at each other’s throats.”
Trump ordered the assassination of General Soleimani as part of his “maximum pressure” policy against Tehran, which included harsh economic sanctions and reckless military provocations.