14 Jan 2018

Iran says it will retaliate against 'hostile' US sanctions

10:58 am on 14 January 2018

Iran has vowed to fight back against sanctions imposed on its judiciary head by the US, as President Donald Trump steps up efforts to "fix" a nuclear deal between Tehran and major powers.

Iran Foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif Khonsari.

Iran Foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif Khonsari. Photo: AFP

Mr Trump yesterday said he would waive nuclear sanctions against Iran for the last time to give Washington and its European allies a chance to fix the "terrible flaws" of the 2015 nuclear deal.

Washington also announced sanctions against 14 entities and people, including the head of Iran's judiciary, Ayatollah Sadeq Larijani.

"The Trump regime's hostile action [against Larijani] … crossed all red lines of conduct in the international community and is a violation of international law and will surely be answered by a serious reaction of the Islamic Republic," Iran's Foreign Ministry said in a statement carried by state media.

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Twitter yesterday, Mr Trump's decision undermined the multilateral agreement.

Iran said it would not accept any changes to its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

In a statement carried by the state-run IRNA news agency, the Foreign Ministry said Iran "will not accept any change in the deal, neither now nor in future" adding that it will "not take any action beyond its commitments".

It also said Iran would not allow the deal to be linked to other issues, after Mr Trump suggested that the sanctions relief under the deal be tied to Iran limiting its long-range ballistic missile program.

Mr Trump extended the waivers of key economic sanctions that were lifted under the agreement limiting Iran's nuclear program.

But he said he would work with European allies to remove so-called "sunset clauses" that allowed Iran to gradually resume advanced nuclear activities in the next decade.

Mr Trump said in a statement, "despite my strong inclination, I have not yet withdrawn the United States from the Iran nuclear deal", saying this was the last chance to fix it.

The next sanctions waivers are due in May.


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