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Uncertainty in UN after US Snaps Back Iran Sanctions
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivers remarks to the media in the Press Briefing Room, at the State Department in Washington, DC, April 29, 2020. (Ronny Przysucha/US State Department)

Uncertainty in UN after US Snaps Back Iran Sanctions

United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Sunday that the US had unilaterally reimposed all sanctions against Iran that were in place prior to the 2015 nuclear deal – a statement roundly ignored and rejected by all other members of the United Nations Security Council as lacking any legal validity. According to Pompeo, Washington is entitled to trigger the sanctions’ “snapback” clause of the deal because of Tehran’s recent violations of the agreement’s restrictions, despite the fact that the US opted out of the pact over two years ago and is no longer a side to it. While Pompeo threatened “consequences” for any nation that would not comply with the American stance, the US’s fellow UNSC members, including its European allies, brushed off the threat as “incapable of legal effect.” Iranian officials celebrated the rare consensus in their favor and proceeded to taunt Washington over the weekend. “The message from Tehran to Washington is clear: Return to the international community. Return to your commitments. Stop this rogue and unruly behavior. The international community will accept you,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said Sunday, while President Hassan Rouhani stated: “The ‘maximum pressure’ of US against the Iranian nation, politically and legally, has turned to ‘maximum isolation’ for the US.”

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