[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/06/23/art.obamapresser1.gi.jpg caption="President Obama said Tuesday that Iran is trying to ‘distract people from what is truly taking place within Iran's borders.’"]WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Barack Obama said Tuesday that the accusations of some in the Iranian government that the United States is "instigating protests" are "patently false and absurd."
The accusations "are an obvious attempt to distract people from what is truly taking place within Iran's borders," Obama said.
"This tired strategy of using old tensions to scapegoat other countries won't work anymore in Iran. This is not about the United States and the West; this is about the people of Iran, and the future that they – and only they – will choose."
Obama said the United States, however, must "bear witness to the courage and dignity of the Iranian people, and to a remarkable opening within Iranian society. And we deplore violence against innocent civilians anywhere that it takes place."
The president made his remarks during a news conference at the White House.