Published: Thu, September 27, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

U.S. 'Disturbed, Disappointed' by E.U. Plan to Evade Iran Sanctions

U.S. 'Disturbed, Disappointed' by E.U. Plan to Evade Iran Sanctions

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo issued a stern rebuke Tuesday to the countries remaining in the Iran nuclear agreement after they announced a financial system to bypass U.S. sanctions on Iran.

The European Union and Iran, along with Russian Federation and China, said they were determined to "protect the freedom of their economic operators to pursue legitimate business with Iran" in a statement issued after high-level talks at the United Nations.

European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini announced the plan after talks at the United Nations with the remaining members of the accord - Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia.

Highlighting how hard it will be for the Europeans to come up with concrete solutions, French state-owned bank Bpifrance on Monday abandoned a plan to set up a financial mechanism to aid French firms trading with Iran.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani Monday ridiculed the Trump administration's plan for strict USA sanctions against his country set to start in November, calling the threat nothing more than an "empty promise" that won't work.

She said that Iran has continued to comply with the nuclear accord despite the USA sanctions, some of which went into effect in August.

The EU announcement comes a day after French state-owned bank Bpifrance said it was suspending a plan to support companies seeking to do business with Iran.

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Mr Trump has called the deal "one-sided", "disastrous" and the "worst I've ever seen".

Earlier Tuesday, Trump said he would not meet Iranian President Hassan Rouhani - who had made no request for a sitdown with the commander-in-chief - but signaled he was open to a future meeting, despite ongoing tensions over Tehran's nuclear deal.

By sustaining revenues to the regime, the European Union is solidifying Iran's ranking as the number one state sponsor of terror and making it richer, he said, adding, "The decision is all the more unacceptable, given the litany of Iranian-backed terrorist activity inside Europe".

Many diplomats and analysts, however, are skeptical such a vehicle could ultimately thwart USA sanctions given that the United States could amend its sanctions laws to prohibit such barter transactions.

President Donald Trump pulled out of an agreement negotiated under his predecessor Barack Obama for Iran to curtail its nuclear program sharply in exchange for sanctions relief.

The former USA envoy to the United Nations (UN) delivered the warning while speaking at the United Against Nuclear Iran summit in NY.

Tehran's Grand Bazaar was hit by strikes late in June and protesters angered by the rial's collapse clashed with the police and traders massed outside parliament to complain about a sharp fall in the value of the national currency.

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