07/18/2018, 08.53
IRAN – UNITED STATES – EUROPEAN UNION
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Iran files suit at international court against US over sanctions

Washington’s decision in May to impose sanctions after pulling out of a nuclear deal violates a 1955 treaty between the two countries. A State Department official said the application was without merit and the United States would fight it in the court. Despite a European request, Washington will not budge on its decision to impose fresh sanctions on corporations operating in Iran. 

Tehran (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Iran has filed a lawsuit against the United States alleging that Washington’s decision in May to impose sanctions after pulling out of a nuclear deal violates a 1955 treaty between the two countries, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) said on Tuesday.

A State Department official said the application was without merit and the United States would fight it in the court.

The ICJ, which is based in The Hague and is also known as the World Court, is the United Nations tribunal for resolving international disputes. Iran’s filing asks the ICJ to order the United States to provisionally lift its sanctions ahead of more detailed arguments.

“Iran is committed to the rule of law in the face of US contempt for diplomacy and legal obligations,” Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in a tweet on Monday, referring to Tehran’s lawsuit at the ICJ.

Iran said in its application that Trump’s move “has violated and continued to violate multiple provisions” of the Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations and Consular Rights, signed long before the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

The court has not yet set a date, but hearings on requests for provisional rulings usually are heard within several weeks, with a decision coming within months. Although the ICJ is the highest United Nations court and its decisions are binding, it has no power to enforce them, and countries – including the United States – have occasionally ignored them.

Meanwhile, Washington has said that it would not budge on its decision to impose fresh sanctions on corporations operating in Iran, despite a European request for exemption, the Financial Times reported Monday.

On 6 June, France, Britain, Germany and the EU had sent US President Donald Trump's administration a joint official request for their companies to be exempt from the fresh US sanctions on Iran.

French Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire had already said the US would not grant Europe its request. Failing an outright exemption, Le Maire had also asked for more time before the sanctions regime was due to kick in. "We have just received the answer, and it's negative," he said.

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