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Iran at The Hague: The Sanctions Are Devastating Our Economy

Iran at The Hague: The Sanctions Are Devastating Our Economy

Tuesday, 28 August, 2018 - 05:15
Members of the International Court of Justice attend a hearing for alleged violations of the 1955 Treaty of Amity between Iran and the US, at the International Court in The Hague, Netherlands August 27, 2018. REUTERS/Piroschka van de Wouw
London - Asharq Al-Awsat
The US views Iran's filing with the International Court of Justice as an attempt to interfere with its rights to take actions on national security grounds and will fight Tehran's claims, the State Department said on Monday as oral proceedings began before the court.

"Iran’s filing with the ICJ is an attempt to interfere with the sovereign rights of the United States to take lawful actions, including re-imposition of sanctions, which are necessary to protect our national security. The proceedings instituted by Iran are a misuse of the Court," Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement.

Tehran launched the suit over US President Donald Trump's decision to reimpose sanctions that were lifted in the landmark 2015 accord.

Iran demanded Monday that the Court order the United States to suspend the sanctions.

Trump says the sanctions are needed to ensure Iran never builds a nuclear bomb. But Iran's representative Mohsen Mohebi branded them "naked economic aggression".

His team of lawyers told the court in The Hague that the measures were already devastating Iran's economy and threatening the welfare of its citizens.

"The United States is publicly propagating a policy intended to damage as severely as possible Iran's economy and Iranian nationals and companies," Mohebi said.

"Iran will put up the strongest resistance to the US economic strangulation, by all peaceful means."

US lawyers are due to give their response in arguments before the court on Tuesday.

"We will vigorously defend against Iran's meritless claims this week in The Hague," said Pompeo.

The US and Iran have clashed at the court in the past since they became enemies after 1979. Iran ignored a 1980 US suit at the ICJ over the seizure of American diplomats in Tehran, which the court found to be illegal.

In another suit and countersuit, the ICJ found that the 1955 friendship treaty was still valid even though it was signed before the Iranian revolution. However, the court found in 2003 that neither actions by the United States against Iranian oil platforms nor Iranian attacks on American shipping violated the treaty.

Meanwhile, President Hassan Rouhani said on Monday that Iran expects the remaining partners in its nuclear agreement to act quickly to preserve it,

Rouhani made the comments in a phone call to French President Emmanuel Macron, according to IRNA.

"Iran has acted upon all its promises in the nuclear agreement and, with attention to the one-sided withdrawal of America ...expects the remaining partners to operate their programs more quickly and transparently," he was quoted as saying.

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