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Wednesday
Oct032012

Clinton: Iran's Government, Not US Sanctions, to Blame for Protests

State Department Photo(WASHINGTON) -- Secretary of State Hillary Clinton laid the blame for unrest in Iran and its falling currency squarely on the shoulders of the Iranian government Wednesday.

“I think the Iranian government deserves responsibility for what is going on inside Iran, and that is who should be held accountable,” said Clinton. “I think they have made their own government decisions, having nothing to do with the sanctions, that have had an impact on the economic conditions inside the country.”

Clinton didn’t deny that the tough U.S. and international sanctions are having an impact on the country, but she said those could be lifted if the Iranian regime were more transparent and co-operative in addressing their nuclear plans.

“Of course, the sanctions have had an impact as well, but those could be remedied in short order if the Iranian government were willing to work with the P-5 plus one and the rest of the international community in a sincere manner.”

Clinton also said the United States was “deeply concerned” about Syria’s mortar attack on the border with Turkey, which killed at least five people in the neighboring country.

“This also comes down to a regime that is causing untold suffering to its own people, solely driven by their desire to stay in power, aided and abetted by nations like Iran that are standing firmly beside the Assad regime regardless of the damage, the loss of life, the violence that is happening both inside of Syria and now increasingly across Syria's borders with their neighbors,” she said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio