The US is sticking with it: UN sanctions against Iran that were once suspended are back in force. Foreign Minister Pompeo warned that European countries like Germany would also have to adhere to it. The US sanctions would also be tightened.
By Antje Passenheim, ARD-Studio Washington
It is a warning that should be heard around the world, said US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo: “No matter who you are, if you violate the arms embargo against Iran, you risk sanctions.” US President Trump had previously signed an order to this effect in Washington. It is a new instrument to enforce the arms embargo against Iran, said Pompeo.
Now the Iranian Ministry of Defense is in focus. Other institutions and people connected with the Tehran’s nuclear, weapons and missile programs are also affected. The punitive measures would also be imposed on Venezuela’s head of state Nicolás Maduro. “Corrupt government officials in Tehran have worked with the illegal government in Venezuela for more than two years to undermine the UN arms embargo,” said the US Secretary of State.
This arms embargo expires in October under the nuclear treaty with Iran. The US had tried in vain to extend the sanctions imposed by the UN Security Council. Because they didn’t get away with it, they are now pulling through the new sanctions single-handedly.
Washington is referring to a mechanism in the nuclear treaty with Iran. The Trump administration unilaterally terminated this international agreement in 2018. Great Britain, France and Germany are also involved in it.
Appeal to Europeans
Pompeo made a targeted appeal to the Europeans: “We have made it very clear that every member state of the United Nations has an obligation to enforce the sanctions. This includes Great Britain, France and Germany. We expect these countries to enforce the sanctions.”
But the parties to the nuclear deal reject it. They fear that the agreement with Tehran would then have failed completely and that they would no longer have any control over the nuclear program. The so-called E3 – Germany, France and Great Britain – together with the majority in the Security Council have rejected the US initiative as illegal. It remains unclear which sanctions the US government is now threatening with.