(TEHRAN, Iran) — In another sign that he’s trying to put as much distance between himself and his immediate predecessor, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has strongly suggested that he won’t resort to the fiery and often provocative rhetoric of former President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad, much of it directed at arch-nemesis Israel.
Iran’s ISNA news agency quoted Rouhani as saying that since Iranians voted last June for a change, it means abandoning some of the old ways that have often left their country isolated.
Taking a jab at Ahmedinejad’s speaking style, Rouhani said, “Foreign policy is not carried out by repeating slogans.”
While the new leader insisted that he would continue to defend Iran’s national interests, “that has to be done appropriately, precisely and rationally.”
And in yet another dig at the old president, Rouhani remarked, “The public will pay dearly for any foreign policy mistake.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Angela Dewan, CNN
KJ Kwon and Ben Westcott, CNN
Steve Visser and Masoud Popalzai, CNN
Kevin Liptak, CNN