Dec 17, 2018 07:56 UTC
  • US sanctions hurt ordinary Iranians, don't change Iran's policy: Zarif

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has once again reiterated the ineffectiveness of US sanctions with regard to causing any change in the Islamic Republic's policies, saying that they only hurt "ordinary Iranians."

According to Press TV, in a post on his official Twitter account on Sunday, Zarif pointed to his participation in the Doha Forum 2018 in Qatar and said he had told the conference that US "sanctions have never worked."

"They (sanctions) hurt ordinary Iranians but don't change [the Islamic Republic's] policy," he said.

Told @DohaForum: Sanctions have never worked. They hurt ordinary Iranians but don't change policy. It was U-turn on part of US which allowed #IranTalks to proceed. Same dynamic today. #Iran and E3+2 are at table. It is US which has decided to walk away and sow violence & chaos. 

— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) December 16, 2018

Referring to the policy adopted by the previous US administration to start talks with Iran over the country's nuclear program, Iran's top diplomat said, "It was U-turn on part of US, which allowed #IranTalks to proceed. Same dynamic today," in a clear reference to the fact that instead of withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal, the new American government had better settle its disputes with Iran at the negotiating table.

Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council – the United States, France, Britain, Russia and China – plus Germany signed the multilateral Iran nuclear agreement, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), on July 14, 2015 and started implementing it on January 16, 2016.

Under the JCPOA, Iran undertook to put limits on its nuclear program in exchange for the removal of nuclear-related sanctions imposed against Tehran.

However, US President Donald Trump withdrew his country in May from the landmark agreement and decided to re-impose unilateral sanctions against Tehran.

Zarif added in his Twitter post that Iran and the remaining signatories to the JCPOA "are at table," emphasizing that "it is [the] US, which has decided to walk away and sow violence & chaos."

In his address to the Doha Forum 2018 in Qatar on Saturday, Zarif said economic sanctions imposed by the United States against Iran will fail to have any impact on the policies of the Islamic Republic at home or abroad.

"It's obviously the case that we are facing economic pressure because of the US sanctions. [The] US is a major global power and it can actually create painful conditions for other countries. But would that lead to a change of policy? I can assure you that it won't," the Iranian foreign minister added.

In November, the Trump administration announced the re-imposition of the “toughest” sanctions ever against Iran's banking and energy sectors with the aim of cutting off the country's oil sales and crucial exports.

A first round of American sanctions took effect in August, targeting Iran's access to the US dollar, metals trading, coal, industrial software, and auto sector.