Published: Tue, August 07, 2018
Markets | By Jeffery Armstrong

Pompeo: Sanctions to be enforced until Iran 'behaves like a normal country'

Pompeo: Sanctions to be enforced until Iran 'behaves like a normal country'

The idea of meeting between the two countries mounted when last Monday, during a press conference with Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, Trump said he would meet with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani without preconditions. "The pressure will not relent while the negotiations go on", said Bolton, one of the administration's main hawks on Iran.

By exiting the JCPOA, the U.S. is able to protect its national security by applying maximum economic pressure on the Iranian regime, he said, adding that so far his administration has issued 17 rounds of Iran-related sanctions, designating 145 companies and individuals.

It will enable EU-based firms to recover damages resulting from the United States sanctions.

Gold prices in Iran are hitting record levels daily as Iranians seek to protect their savings against pending USA sanctions that are dragging down the national currency.

Rouhani referred to fears that essential supplies such as medicines would be affected when sanctions return on Tuesday.

"Our stated policy has not been regime change, it has been to modify the regime's behavior", an administration official said.

"The US reimposes sanctions on Iran and pulls out of the (2015) nuclear deal, and then wants to hold talks with us", Rouhani said. That also has Iran trying to make some last-minute purchases while they know they still can.

"How do they show they are trustworthy?"

"The regime has used the windfall of newly accessible funds it received under the JCPOA to build nuclear capable missiles, fund terrorism, and fuel conflict across the Middle East and beyond", Trump said in his Monday statement, repeating a claim his administration has often made.

Iran has its back against a wall and faces economic or military defeat by the U.S. or a humiliating summit with Trump.

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President Donald Trump is aiming to cut off the Iranian leadership's access to resources, senior U.S. administration officials said on Monday. "And this is against the nation of Iran and the national interests of Iran".

US President Donald Trump withdrew from the landmark agreement in May, paving the way for sanctions to be reimposed.

Pompeo says the sanctions will be rigorously enforced and remain in place until the Iranian government radically changes course.

Mr Trump believes the economic pressure will force Iran to agree to a new deal and end its "malign" activities.

Rouhani accused the U.S. of seeking to "launch psychological warfare against the Iranian nation and create divisions among the people".

"We are still waiting", he said.

But the United States sanctions strategy has several weak spots, especially a reluctance by Europe and China to curtail business with Iran.

It has added to tensions inside Iran, which has seen days of protests and strikes in multiple towns and cities over water shortages, high prices and wider anger at the political system.

He also claimed the fault was with worldwide restrictions, USA actions, and internal unrest - saying the rial's troubles began after protests swept through the country in January.

The measures appeared to calm the markets on Monday, with the rial strengthening to 95,500 to the dollar - a 20 percent improvement on its record-low of 119,000 a fortnight ago.

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"If Iran were really serious they'd come to the table".

On the same day, Iranian authorities detained Ahmad Araqchi, a deputy Central Bank governor in charge of foreign exchange.

Renewed US hostility has already sparked a run on Iran's currency, which has lost around half its value since Trump's announcement.

European Union diplomatic chief Federica Mogherini said the bloc, as well as Britain, France and Germany, deeply regretted the move by Washington.

Speaking to reporters en route from a three-nation trip to Southeast Asia, Pompeo said Monday's re-imposition of some sanctions is an important pillar in US policy toward Iran.

"The JCPOA is working and delivering on its goal, namely to ensure that the Iranian program remains exclusively peaceful", the statement went on.

But the European ministers said the Iran deal is "crucial for the security of Europe, the region and the entire world".

ATR, jointly owned by European consortium Airbus and Italy's Leonardo, has been pushing US officials to allow it to finish its delivery of aircraft to Iran.

A senior administration official said the United States is "not particularly concerned" by EU efforts to protect European firms from the re imposition of sanctions.

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