U.S President Donald Trump imposed
new sanctions on Iran as punishment for shooting down a US surveillance drone
over the Strait of Hormuz.
Trump signed an executive order to
deny supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, his office, and eight Revolutionary
Guard commanders access to financial resources.
Later this week, similar sanctions
will be imposed on Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman
Abbas Mousavi accused the American government of “destroying the established
international mechanisms for maintaining world peace and security”.
The U.S President said the new
sanctions were imposed amidst escalating tensions between the two countries. He
justified the sanctions as the proper response to Iran’s increasingly provocative
Trump also warned that his patience
may be at a tipping point. He issued a vague threat to end U.S. protection for
international shipping in the vital Strait of Hormuz, off Iran.
Mr. Mousavi posted the following
message on Twitter:
“Imposing useless sanctions on Iran’s
supreme leader and the commander of Iran’s diplomacy is the permanent closure
of the path of diplomacy
“Trump’s desperate administration is
destroying the established international mechanisms for maintaining world peace
The White House believed the
sanctions were long overdue:
“The President has held the door open to real
negotiations to completely and verifiably eliminate Iran’s nuclear weapons
program, its ballistic missile delivery systems, its support for international
terrorism and other malign behavior worldwide.
“All that Iran needs to do is to walk
through that open door.”
Iran’s UN ambassador, Majid Takht
Ravanchi responded with a warning saying that the situation in the Persian Gulf
was becoming “dangerous” and that negotiations with the U.S will be moot in the
face of intensified sanctions and intimidation.
Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani
called the new sanctions “outrageous and idiotic.”
“The White House actions mean it is
mentally retarded,” he added. “You sanction the foreign minister simultaneously
with a request for talks?”
Meanwhile, U.S National
Security Adviser John Bolton still insists that Washington will continue
negotiations with Tehran.