In this photo released by the official website of the office of the Iranian Presidency, President Hassan Rouhani speaks in a meeting with a group of university teachers, in Tehran, Iran, Monday, May 21, 2018. (Iranian Presidency Office via AP)
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The United States Monday demanded Iran make sweeping changes – from dropping its nuclear program to pulling out of the Syrian civil war – or face severe economic sanctions as U.S. President's Donald Trump's administration hardened its approach to Tehran.Iran dismissed Washington's ultimatum and one senior Iranian official said it showed the U.S. is seeking "regime change" in Iran.Iran's president summarily dismissed Pompeo's demands.A senior Iranian official said Pompeo's remarks showed that the United States was pushing for "regime change," a charged phrase often associated with the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003 and the overthrow of President Saddam Hussein.Pompeo warned that if Iran fully resumed its nuclear program, Washington would be ready to respond and said the administration would hold companies doing prohibited business in Iran to account.Pompeo said Washington would work with the Defense Department and allies to counter Iran in the cyberspace and maritime areas.Pompeo outlined 12 U.S. demands for Iran including to stop uranium enrichment, never to pursue plutonium reprocessing and to close its heavy water reactor.
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