Iran calls fresh United States sanctions illegal, hostile

Sunday, 14 Jan, 2018

In his decision not to immediately terminate the agreement, Mr Trump is also waiving nuclear sanctions against Iran for the last time, the officials said. But he is giving the other countries in the deal a warning.

America's allies see the accord as the best way to thwart Iran's nuclear ambitions and a victory for multilateral diplomacy.

Regarding the USA administration's move in imposing new sanctions on some Iranian persons and entities, the deputy foreign minister said "nobody has the right to re-impose any previous sanctions under any excuse", calling Mr Trump's action "against worldwide rules".

MICHELE KELEMEN, BYLINE: Hi, Kelly. What exactly did President Trump do today?

Trump did not pursue tougher sanctions in connection with the nuclear deal on Friday, as some observers had expected. It's something he has to do every few months, and it's clear he doesn't like it.

The bill from Congress needs to ensure "Iran never even comes close to possessing a nuclear weapon", Trump stated, adding that "unlike the nuclear deal, these provisions must have no expiration date". "I said I would not certify the nuclear deal, and I did not".

The White House wants a deal with European Union signatories to make restrictions on Iran's uranium enrichment permanent. He said both parties in the US Congress must work together to produce a bill demanding "that Iran allow immediate inspections at all sites requested by worldwide inspectors".

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif by phone that implementation of the deal had not been "derailed" but would face "some new complicating factors", the state news agency Xinhua reported.

Iran's missile program could potentially balloon into a foreign policy crisis on par with its nuclear weapons ambitions since as Patty points out, Iranian strategic doctrine is highly dependent upon credible threats to shower its neighbors with missiles if it is attacked. Let's listen to a bit of what he had to say. And I would be extraordinarily surprised if the Europeans would have any part of that.

Trump has come under heavy pressure from European leaders not to walk away from the deal.

He further stressed that the deal is "not renegotiable" and urged Trump to, instead of repeating exhausted rhetoric, bring the United States into full compliance of the deal, just like Iran.

Other sanctions target companies accused of conducting prohibited transactions with Iranian entities.

The Islamic Republic's latest and probably the most significant achievement in this regard was a $6 billion investment agreement with Italy inked on Thursday.

The sanctions with the most political repercussions are against the administrative head of Iran's judiciary, Sadegh Amoli Larijani. And those are focused really on human rights abuses.

MCEVERS: NPR's diplomatic correspondent Michele Kelemen, thank you very much.