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DUBAI (Reuters) – The Revolutionary Guards can take their fight beyond Iran's borders, the supreme leader said on Friday, responding to the U.S. killing of his country's most prominent commander and to anti-government unrest at home over the downing of an airliner.
In his first Friday prayers sermon in eight years, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei also told thousands of Iranians who chanted "Death to America!" that European powers could not be trusted in Iran's nuclear standoff with Washington.
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Iran - Ambitions - Heart - Crisis - January
Iran's nuclear ambitions have been at the heart of a months-long crisis, which briefly erupted in January into ****-for-tat military strikes between Iran and the United States.
"Resistance must continue until the region is completely freed from the enemy's tyranny," Khamenei said, demanding that U.S. troops leave neighboring Iraq and the wider Middle East.
Washington - Withdrawal - Tehran - Deal - World
Washington's withdrawal in 2018 from Tehran's nuclear deal with world powers and the reimposition of U.S. sanctions that have crippled Iran's economy, led to the latest cycle of hostilities between Washington and Tehran, which have been at odds since the 1979 revolution toppled the U.S.-backed shah.
U.S. President Donald Trump ordered the killing in a drone strike on Jan. 3 of Qassem Soleimani, commander of the Quds Force, a unit of the Guards responsible for expanding Iran's influence abroad. He built up regional militias that Washington has blamed for attacks on U.S. forces.
Iran - Missile - Strikes - US - Targets
Iran responded with missile strikes on U.S. targets in Iraq on Jan. 8, injuring although not killing U.S. troops.
"The fact that Iran has the power to give such a slap to a world power shows the hand of God," said Khamenei, in a reference to the strikes, adding that the killing of Soleimani showed Washington's...
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