US addicted to imposing sanctions but Iran is immunized: Zarif
Amid US President Donald Trump’s threats to pull out of the historic nuclear deal signed between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries more than two years ago, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says the United States is addicted to imposing sanctions but after four decades of such bans Iran is invulnerable, APA reports quoting Press TV.
“The United States has had a policy of imposing sanctions on Iran for the past 40 years. Basically, they have immunized us to US sanctions,” Zarif said in an interview with Qatar-based broadcaster Al Jazeera released on Saturday.
“But from a global perspective, it seems that the United States is addicted to sanctions," he added in response to a question about speculations on a possible decision by Trump and the US Congress to impose sanctions on the Islamic Republic.
“They believe that sanctions do work. In fact, I think they [American officials] should have learnt by now that sanctions don’t work,” he pointed out.
Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council – the United States, France, Britain, Russia and China – plus Germany signed the nuclear agreement, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), on July 14, 2015 and started implementing it on January 16, 2016.
Under the JCPOA, Iran undertook to put limitations on its nuclear program in exchange for the removal of nuclear-related sanctions imposed against Tehran.
During his speech at the UN General Assembly on September 19, Trump described the JCPOA as “the worst and most one-sided transaction Washington has ever entered into,” a characterization he often used during his presidential campaign.
The US Republican president faces an October 15 deadline for certifying that Iran is complying with the deal. Such certification is needed by US law every 90 days in order for Congress to continue to withhold nuclear-related sanctions against Iran.
The Trump administration has twice so far certified Iran’s compliance with the deal, but reports say he will most likely refuse to do that for a third time, leaving the Republican-controlled Congress to decide in 60 days whether to re-impose anti-Iran sanctions waived under the deal. That would let Congress effectively decide whether to kill the deal.
While the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has on multiple occasions confirmed Iran’s compliance with its commitments under the nuclear deal, the Trump administration itself has not been able to point to a single area in which Iran is in breach of the terms of the agreement.
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