Hassan Rouhani (Tasnim News Agency/Wikimedia Commons)

US to Push for Sanctions ‘Snapback’ if UN’s Iran Arms Embargo Expires

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has vowed to press for the “snapback” of United Nations sanctions on Iran unless an arms embargo set to expire in October is extended. He also confirmed that Washington had presented a resolution that would continue to prevent Tehran from purchasing conventional weapons, although both Russia and China have threatened to wield their veto power to torpedo the initiative. “Our focus now is to work with the Security Council to pass this resolution,” Pompeo was quoted by media as saying. “But in the event it doesn’t happen, we remind the world that the Obama administration’s officials said very clearly that the United States has the unilateral ability to snap back sanctions into place.” The lifting of the arms embargo was spelled out in a 2015 UNSC resolution that enshrined into international law the multilateral nuclear deal. President Donald Trump in May 2018 withdrew the US from the accord and re-imposed crippling economic sanctions on Iran. Nevertheless, the American administration contends that it technically remains a party to the deal and therefore can trigger the reimplementation of UN sanctions that were lifted in accordance with the nuclear agreement. Last week, the European parties to the deal – Britain, France and Germany – expressed support for extending the embargo.

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