Iran's Zarif mocks Trump's 'shameful' statement on Saudi prince

Trump's recent statement on Saudi Arabia opened with a litany of complaints against Iran, prompting Tehran's mockery.

    Zarif mocked Trump by tweeting: 'Perhaps we're also responsible for the California fires' [File: Anadolu]
    Zarif mocked Trump by tweeting: 'Perhaps we're also responsible for the California fires' [File: Anadolu]

    Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has mocked United States President Donald Trump's announcement that he would stick by Saudi Arabia despite the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

    "Mr. Trump bizarrely devotes the FIRST paragraph of his shameful statement on Saudi atrocities to accuse IRAN of every sort of malfeasance he can think of," Zarif wrote on Twitter late on Tuesday.

    Trump's statement on Saudi Arabia did indeed open with a litany of complaints against Iran, which he used to justify his continued backing of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

    "Perhaps we're also responsible for the California fires, because we didn't help rake the forests - just like the Finns do?" Zarif added.

    Visiting the scene of California's devastating Camp Fire on Saturday, Trump had said Finland had managed to avoid such fires by spending "a lot of time on raking and cleaning and doing things" to clear forest floors.

    Trump has resisted mounting evidence of Saudi government's involvement in the Khashoggi killing, including from his own intelligence services.

    "It could very well be that the crown prince had knowledge of this tragic event - maybe he did and maybe he didn't!" he wrote.

    Iran and Saudi Arabia are regional rivals and have supported opposing sides in the conflicts in Syria and Yemen and different political factions in Iraq and Lebanon.

    Trump has adopted a hardline stance on Iran since taking office, withdrawing from the landmark 2015 nuclear accord and imposing tough sanctions against the country.

    The White House views Saudi Arabia as a key partner in confronting Iran.

    SOURCE: News agencies