US President Donald Trump is looking for another showdown with Iran shortly before the November elections. His government wants to force the international community to restore the suspended UN arms embargo on Iran. Washington declared on Sunday evening that the embargo was back in effect. The United Nations has no support for their position at the United Nations. But America could now single-handedly stop Iranian merchant ships or take action against the Iranians’ economic partners. Iran therefore fears a new escalation, the exchange rate of the national currency fell to a new low.
According to the 2015 nuclear agreement, the embargo against Iran will expire on October 18. The treaty provides for the dismantling of international sanctions against Tehran in exchange for restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program. Iranian treaty violations can be punished with a refund of sanctions, a so-called “snapback”. Despite some violations by the Iranians in the field of uranium enrichment, the remaining partners in the nuclear deal want the arms embargo to end as planned. The Trump administration, on the other hand, wants to keep it in effect and thus cause the nuclear treaty as a whole to fail. So Washington has now activated the “snapback”.
[Mit dem Newsletter „Twenty/Twenty“ begleiten unsere US-Experten Sie jeden Donnerstag auf dem Weg zur Präsidentschaftswahl. Hier geht es zur kostenlosen Anmeldung: tagesspiegel.de/twentytwenty.]
However, the US has not been a partner in the nuclear deal since 2018. Washington could not leave the treaty but then reclaim the treaty’s provisions for itself, criticized the European signatories to the nuclear agreement, Germany, France and Britain. The US government’s decision therefore has “no legal effect”. Russia and China also rejected the US position. Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh noted that the “snapback” only exists in the “fantasy world” of the US government.
Washington doesn’t mind the criticism. America expects all member states of the United Nations to comply with the sanctions from now on, said Secretary of State Michael Pompeo. According to media reports, the US government wants to deny international arms companies access to the US market when doing business with Iran. Trump could also order the US Navy to stop ships in international waters if there are suspicions of supplies to or from Iran.
Tehran rejects negotiations with the US government
Since the US withdrew from the nuclear treaty, the Trump administration has sought to impose sanctions on the Iranian oil industry to force the Tehran government to make further concessions on the nuclear issue and the country’s military missile program. Tehran rejects negotiations with the US government under pressure from the sanctions and hopes for Trump to be defeated in the presidential election on Nov. 3. Challenger Joe Biden wants the US to rejoin the nuclear treaty if Iran stops violating the treaty.
According to the New York Times, revolutionary leader Ali Khamenei in the escalating conflict currently only allows cyber attacks on US targets because he does not want to provoke a US military attack against Iran. But if the US were to attack Iranian merchant ships, Tehran could give up its reluctance. US sanctions have exacerbated Iran’s economic crisis; According to media reports, authorities expect new protests against the poor living conditions. The local currency, the rial, has never been so weak. At the same time, the country is fighting the worst coronavirus outbreak in the entire Middle East.
[Die Coronavirus-Krise ist auch für die Politik eine historische Herausforderung. Jeden Morgen informieren wir Sie, liebe Leserinnen und Leser, in unserer Morgenlage über die politischen Entscheidungen, Nachrichten und Hintergründe. Zur kostenlosen Anmeldung geht es hier. ]
The regime might be tempted to divert attention from domestic political troubles with a fresh showdown against the US. Iran’s hardliners have announced revenge for the US assassination of senior General Qassem Soleimani in January. According to media reports, US intelligence services are convinced that Iran is planning an attack on the ambassador to South Africa, Lana Marks. Marks is friends with Trump. Tehran rejects the allegation.