US Navy: Will Protect Commerce in Face of Iran Oil Threat

06 July, 2018, 19:30 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • David Peterlin

Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif has called on European powers to implement economic measures to protect the 2015 nuclear deal before U.S. sanctions against Tehran snap back between August and November.

On Wednesday, the Iranian President Hassan Rouhani also warned Washington against intervening into Iran's oil trade and threatened the USA with "consequences", even though he did not name any specific measures.

Speaking after the meeting between the remaining parties to the nuclear accord, Mogherini, who chairs the talks, read a statement saying all sides would continue to look at ways to salvage the deal, despite the reimposition of US sanctions.

"Unfortunately, the proposed package lacked an action plan or a clear road map for continuation of cooperation. For the start August it seems a bit short, but we are trying to do it by November", he was quoted by Reuters news agency as telling a French radio station.

Since Trump's shock move in May, which dismayed all other signatories, Washington has warned other countries to end trade and investment in Iran and stop buying its oil from early November or face punitive measures.

"All the commitments made today, should be implemented before the August deadline ... it is up to the leadership in Tehran to decide whether Iran should remain in the deal ... the proposal was not precise and a complete one", Mohammed Javad Zarif told reporters.

After the plot was uncovered, Netanyahu urged European countries to call off planned talks with Iran over preserving the nuclear deal. "It's also not just about what the Europeans can do, but also how the Chinese, Russians, Indians, others can contribute", said a senior European diplomat.

The head of Iran's Revolutionary Guards said on Thursday their forces were ready to implement Iran's threat to block the Strait of Hormuz and that if Iran can not sell its oil under the US pressure, no other regional country will be allowed to.

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"It is easier said than done", he said, adding that the Europeans alone "undoubtedly" do not have enough enough political means to protect the Iran deal from USA pressure.

In light of Washington's push on sanctions, European leaders have said they would do their utmost of maintain business ties with Iran but it would be hard for them to make any "guarantees".

This week, the European Parliament approved a key component of the package, giving the European Investment Bank authority to invest in Iran despite the US sanctions.

Reuters reports that whether the bank will invest in Iran is in doubt. "Enough with the policy of appeasement and weakness regarding Iran". We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

Beyond the European Investment Bank plan, other elements of the European economic package that Rohani criticized as insufficient include a special measure to shield EU companies from the US sanctions and a proposal for EU governments to make direct money transfers to Iran's central bank to avoid USA penalties.

During a visit to Europe this week President Hassan Rouhani warned that Iran could reduce its co-operation with the United Nations nuclear watchdog, having already threatened Trump of the "consequences" of fresh sanctions against Iranian oil sales.

Since Trump's announcement, Iran's rial currency has fallen, prices have risen and the country has been hit by street protests and strikes.

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