Jalili: Threatened? Are you serious? Iran is more stable than ever before. We have never been in a better political and economic position in the region. We now have more opportunities than ever.
Jalili: This is not a threat for us. We see it as a great opportunity to expand our economic independence. Sanctions help us achieve this goal. We are positively happy about them. For example, we had to import gasoline before the sanctions, and now we’re exporting it.
SPIEGEL: You want us to believe that, at a time when the price of gasoline has just shot up?
Jalili: Yes, because this price increase is not a result of the UN resolutions, but of the targeted, comprehensive elimination of subsidies. We could afford to do this because the population supports us completely. This move, which is the biggest intervention in our economy since the establishment of the Islamic Republic, is proof of our self-confidence in political and economic matters.
SPIEGEL: Your self-assurance is breathtaking. Do you really not worry that the external and internal pressure will become overwhelming, and that the days of Iran’s theocracy are numbered?
Jalili: I can only laugh in response. For the last 30 years, our enemies have predicted our demise every six months. Anyone betting on those predictions has lost. The Islamic Republic can…