Trump administration officially restores Iran sanctions

06 November, 2018, 01:44 | Author: Sue Mclaughlin
  • A gas flare on an oil production platform in the Soroush oil fields is seen alongside an Iranian flag in the Gulf

The United States announced a new raft of sanctions on Iran on Monday and threatened further action.

Over 700 entities were targeted, according to CBS News; some of the sanctions had been imposed by the Obama administration but were canceled when Obama signed on to the Iran nuclear deal.

The measures described by Washington as "the toughest sanctions ever" follow Trump's controversial decision in May to abandon the multi-nation nuclear deal with Tehran.

Washington has pledged to completely stop purchases of crude oil from Iran eventually, but for now it said eight countries - China, India, South Korea, Japan, Italy, Greece, Taiwan and Turkey - can continue imports for now without penalty.

Late last week, US government officials signaled that the United States had granted waivers to eight countries to continue temporary buying Iranian oil, on the condition that they had significantly reduced purchases from Iran.

The reimposition of sanctions lifted under a 2015 nuclear deal adds 300 new designations in Iran's oil, shipping, insurance and banking sectors, to try to sharply reduce the country's petroleum revenues, a mainstay of its economy.

Iran's Foreign Minister, Javad Zarif, blustered that the sanctions would only isolate the United States, tweeting, "Today, US defied UN top court & Security Council by reimposing sanctions on Iran that target ordinary people". SUBSCRIBE NOW and hit the bell to be the first in the know.

Pompeo reiterated demands for Iran to make a "180-degree turn" from its regional policies rooted in the 1979 Islamic revolution, such as support for the Lebanese terror group Hezbollah.

These latest sanctions are, as such, created to hit Iran hard - in the words of U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, this is a strategy of "maximum pressure" that aims to "alter the Iranian regime's behavior" regarding its nuclear ambitions and support for groups such as Hezbollah.

"But America's plots and its plans for sanctions will be defeated through continued resistance", said Jafari.

"It will be hard for Iran to maximise exports when virtually all trade in oil is cleared in United States dollars, putting worldwide oil companies, many national oil companies, traders and banks off limits", said Homayoun Falakshahi, analyst at Wood Mackenzie.

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He added: "In the past few months our people have faced hard times and it's possible that the next few months will be hard ". Earlier, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the punitive Iranian sanctions would return on Monday, November 5.

The sanctions also come as Iran's economy is under pressure from the first round of U.S. sanctions that went into effect in August.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Friday, "Starting today, Iran will have zero oil revenue to spend on any of these things".

Iran has greeted the reimposition of U.S. sanctions with air defence drills and an acknowledgement from the president, Hassan Rouhani, that the country faces a "war situation", raising tensions in the Middle East.

Diplomats, however, said there were no plans to raise the U.S. sanctions at the council for the time being.

'We are in the economic war situation. We are confronting a bullying enemy.

"The maximum pressure exerted by the United States is only going to mount from here".

But the sanctions on Iranian oil exports also reportedly exempt several of the world's largest economies.

And Iran's President Hassan Rouhani has greeted the move by ordering air defence drills.

The Trump administration also designated more than 200 persons and vessels in Iran's shipping and energy sectors, including the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines, which is a maritime carrier, and oil transport giant National Iranian Tanker Company. The other signatories - Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China - remain committed to the accord.

"That's why they want us to round up our missiles".

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