John Bolton Fired Due to ‘Failed’ Iran Policy, Rouhani’s Aide Says

Abbas Al Lawati and Arsalan Shahla

(Bloomberg) -- The dismissal of John Bolton as U.S. national security adviser is a recognition by the Trump administration that its policy toward Iran has been a “failure,” according to a top aide to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

“The firing of Bolton after a not-so-long period shows that even the hawkish U.S. government has come to the conclusion that the age of warmongering and intimidation is over and, if it’s to interact with the world, reason is the way,” Rouhani’s chief of staff, Mahmoud Vaezi, was cited by state-run Islamic Republic News Agency as saying.

U.S. President Donald Trump announced in a tweet on Tuesday that he had sacked Bolton, citing strong disagreements over policy. The move followed growing speculation that Trump and Rouhani might hold talks this month at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, a potentially historic meeting that would mark a significant lowering of tensions between the two nations.

Any get-together still faces substantial hurdles as top officials on both sides remain opposed to major concessions. Addressing Bolton’s dismissal, Iran’s UN ambassador, Majid Takht-Ravanchi, said that talks between the leaders were out of the question while Washington’s policy of “economic terrorism against Iran” remained in place, IRNA reported.

Vaezi’s comments are the first substantial official reaction to Bolton’s firing from the Iranian government, which has been at the center of Bolton’s hawkish cross-hairs since he was named national security adviser in April 2018.

A month into the appointment, Trump announced the U.S.’s exit from the 2015 nuclear deal and started the toughest sanctions regime ever imposed by Washington on another country.

(Updates with fresh quotes and background.)

To contact the reporters on this story: Abbas Al Lawati in Dubai at;Arsalan Shahla in Tehran at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Shaji Mathew at, Mark Williams, Amy Teibel

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