International condemnation over new US sanctions against Iran
A new round of US sanctions against Iran has provoked 'outrage', 'deep regret', and strong condemnation from several countries.
Iran Press/Iran News: France, Germany, Britain and the European Union issued a joint condemnation of the United States’ move to place fresh sanctions on the Iranian economy, vowing to protect European companies doing "legitimate" business with Tehran.
In a joint statement issued on Friday, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and the E3 ministers of foreign affairs and finance expressed “deep regret” over the reimposition of unilateral US sanctions on Iran and vowed to preserve and maintain “effective financial channels with Iran, and the continuation of Iran’s export of oil and gas.”
Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said his country will help Iran counter fresh US sanctions and Moscow will continue trading Tehran’s crude in defiance of Washington.
“We already live in the conditions of sanctions. We do not recognize the sanctions introduced unilaterally without the United Nations, we consider those methods illegal per se," Russian Energy Minister told the Financial Times.
Iran said the United States is seeking to wage an extensive “psychological war” against Tehran by imposing a fresh round of sanctions, stressing that the Islamic Republic has no concerns over such US bids.
"The possibility of America being able to achieve its economic goals through these sanctions is very remote and there is certainly no possibility that it will attain its political goals through such sanctions," he said.
On Wednesday, Bahram Ghasemi, commenting on impending US sanctions against Iran said, US policies of exerting pressure and imposing sanctions have failed.
Ghasemi added: "The current US administration with its unilateral policies is attempting to impose a US hegemony on the world."
The Trump administration is set to reimpose all sanctions against Iran that had been lifted as part of the 2015 nuclear agreement, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said.
Speaking alongside US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Pompeo added: "Our ultimate aim is to compel Iran to permanently abandon its well-documented outlaw activities and behave as a normal country.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 2 November 2018
US President Donald Trump then tweeted a photo of himself with the words: "Sanctions are coming," a play on the well-known "Game of Thrones" saying, "Winter is coming."
How do you say trademark misuse in Dothraki?
— HBO (@HBO) 2 November 2018
HBO, the network which produces Game of Thrones, gave Trump's use of its imagery a frosty response, saying, "We were not aware of this messaging and would prefer our trademark not be misappropriated for political purposes."
A couple of the GoT cast members had their own reactions to Trump’s tweet, and they weren’t approving, to put it mildly. “Ew,” said “Sansa Stark” actress Sophie Turner in a reply to POTUS on social media.
Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Quds Force Major General Qassem Soleimani responded to US President Donald Trump’s announcement that ‘sanctions are coming’ with a Game of Thrones-inspired meme of his own.
“Come! We are waiting,” Major General Soleimani wrote on his Instagram page on Friday.
“I can stop you. Quds Force can stop you,” added Soleimani. “You start this war, but we will finish it.”
On November 5, the second round of US restrictions against Iran, re-introduced after the US withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), will come into effect.
"The United States remains open to reaching a new, more comprehensive deal with Iran that forever blocks its path to a nuclear weapon, addresses the entire range of its malign actions, and is worthy of the Iranian people. Until then, our historic sanctions will remain in full force," Trump said in a statement issued by the White House late on Friday.
The sanctions will take effect Monday and cover Iran's shipping, financial and energy sectors.
According to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, the sweeping sanctions will see 700 people blacklisted, including people who were granted relief under the 2015 deal, as well as over 300 new names.
Speaking to reporters on Friday, Mnuchin said the sanctions will also target payments made through the EU’s special purpose vehicle (SPV) channel.
He also warned global financial messaging service SWIFT that it could be punished if it doesn’t cut off financial services to entities and individuals doing business with Iran.
But the Trump administration will grant eight jurisdictions special exemptions to continue importing oil from Iran after US sanctions on the country snap back into place on Monday
A senior administration official told Bloomberg that waivers were aimed at preventing oil price hikes and would be granted in exchange for continued import cuts.
In an opinion piece published by the Financial Times on Thursday, Iran's President Hassan Rouhani lashed out at Washington for its' foreign policy over the past two years, saying that the US administration’s policies have emerged as a new and complicated problem for the world.
“In brief, the US administration’s policies of unilateralism, racial discrimination, Islamophobia, and the undermining of important international treaties, including the Paris Climate Accord, are fundamentally incompatible with multilateralism and other socio-political norms valued by Europe,” the president added. 101