Iran's President Hassan Rouhani speaks during a news conference, after addressing the 71st session of the U.N. General Assembly, Thursday Sept. 22, 2016, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)
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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani Thursday joined in opposing a call by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to halt all flights over Syria in efforts to get relief shipments through, saying that would only help Islamic radicals gain ground.Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told Congress any grounding of war planes should exclude American aircraft, and Russia's deputy foreign minister said grounding flights would make matters worse, a view echoed Thursday by Rouhani.Rouhani suggested air strikes remain the best way of attack on Islamic radicals.Iran strongly backs Assad's government and Rouhani said the first priority now should be getting aid to those in need.Tehran says America is to blame, a theme Rouhani sounded both in an earlier speech to the General Assembly and in his comments to reporters.Rouhani said these led to a more insecure world by "advancing different methods of repression and military intervention under the pretext of creating a secure environment for their citizens".He also was critical of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling this year allowing families of victims of bombing attacks that Washington says were linked to Iran to allow monetary damages from that country.
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