Second wave of United States sanctions on Iran starts tomorrow

Second wave of United States sanctions on Iran starts tomorrow

President Donald Trump stands with Lee Greenwood as he sings "God Bless the USA" to start a rally with supporters in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

India's oil minister Dharmendra Pradhan confirmed on Saturday that the country, Iran's top oil client after China, had won a waiver from the United States sanctions after a "forceful campaign" by prime minister Narendra Modi.

Controversy arose when the sanctions were announced in terms of Iran's access to the SWIFT financial system and its potential to bypass the sanctions through it.

The United States imposed a new set of sanctions on Iran's oil sector on November 5, with a stated goal to reduce its exports to zero.

The U.S. president abandoned the nuclear agreement in May, accusing Iran of violating the deal. "The authorities are in direct contact with the competent authorities of the United States, the European Union and Iran", the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) said. Its national currency, the rial, now trades at 150,000 to one US dollar, down from when it traded around 40,500 to $1 a year ago.

The Trump administration though has granted exemptions to eight countries to continue importing Iranian oil, without naming them.

Italy, Greece, South Korea, Taiwan and Turkey also figure in the list released by Pompeo.

Thousands of Iranians chanting "Death to America" rallied on Sunday, rejecting calls for talks.

Iran's economic chaos sparked mass anti-government protests at the end of past year which resulted in almost 5,000 reported arrests and at least 25 people being killed.

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We've already reduced Iranian crude oil exports by over a million barrels per day.

Fortunately today, the U.S. is more isolated than ever following its withdrawal from the JCPOA, said Rouhani, adding "almost all countries in the world except for a few are standing with us against the United States, and that is the victory of our diplomacy".

"I am very confident that the sanctions that will be reimposed this Monday - not only the crude oil sanctions but the financial sanctions are being put in place by the Treasury Department and over 600 designations of individuals and companies in Iran - will have the intended effect to alter the Iranian regime's behavior", Pompeo said "That's our expectation".

State television RTV led its morning news broadcasts with pictures of military exercises including anti-aircraft maneuvers. The drill was to continue through Tuesday.

Army General Habibillah Sayyari said both the national army and the country's paramilitary Revolutionary Guard were taking part in the exercise.

Iranian president Hassan Rouhani earlier vowed to "confront a bullying power". "The US - and not Iran - is isolated". "They will definitely have a gradual escalating impact on economic conditions and, subsequently, on the relations between Iran and the US".

One user tweeted in English: "Over the past 40 years, the Islamic regime of Iran tried to present the U.S. and Israel as Iran's enemies. We are prepared to resist any pressure", Rouhani said.

Mr Zarif said: "Today, US defied United Nations top court and Security Council by reimposing sanctions on Iran that target ordinary people". The other parties to the deal - Britain, France, Germany, China and Russian Federation - say they will not leave. But "Iran has weathered multiple rounds of sanctions before".

France, Germany, Britain, and the European Union issued a joint condemnation Friday of the USA move, vowing to protect European companies doing "legitimate" business with Tehran.

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