Seoul expects stable supply of Iranian oil following sanction exemptions

Seoul expects stable supply of Iranian oil following sanction exemptions

The United States officially reimposed all penalties that had been lifted as part of the Iranian nuclear deal as the Trump administration added almost 700 targets, including 50 Iranian financial institutions, to a sanctions list Monday. "It can either do an 180-degree turn ... and act like a normal country, or it can see its economy crumble".

As per conditions of the U.S. waiver, New Delhi will have to stop importing Iranian crude altogether towards May next year, which coincides with the crucial Lok Sabha elections.

"We are in the war situation", President Hassan Rouhani said in a television address as the sanctions snapped into place. Washington has restored measures lifted under a 2015 nuclear deal negotiated with Tehran by the administration of President Barack Obama.

In a statement, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said: "Treasury's imposition of unprecedented financial pressure on Iran should make clear to the Iranian regime that they will face mounting financial isolation and economic stagnation until they fundamentally change their destabilizing behavior". Iran's biggest oil buyers in recent years have been China, India, South Korea, Turkey, Italy, the United Arab Emirates and Japan.

The United States said Monday it was issuing waivers to allow the continuation of a nuclear deal with Iran, after declaring the agreement a disaster and slapping sweeping sanctions.

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"It would be up to the judgment of private firms, but based on this decision, the (Japanese) companies would likely prepare for resuming Iran crude imports", Seko told reporters.

Trump promised not only to return the previous sanctions, but also to introduce new ones, and in this connection, the State Department announced Washington's intention to reduce to zero Iran's revenues from oil exports.

Chris Hannas and Cindy Saine reported this story for VOA News.

US National Security Advisor John Bolton claimed that the nuclear deal with Iran failed to "permanently block all paths to an Iranian nuclear bomb". But this has faced a set back with the FT reporting that the worldwide financial messaging system based in Belgium, saying that it would comply with the restored United States sanctions and suspend "certain Iranian banks'" access to its cross border-payment network.

Iran's clerical rulers dismissed the curbs.

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"The enemy is targeting our economy ... the main target of sanctions is our people", he said.

Now in the sanctions list of the US against Iran over 700 individuals, companies, vessels and aircraft, including the largest banks and companies in the export of oil.

The administration also granted eight countries a six-month exemption from penalties for buying Iranian crude. The other parties to the deal - Britain, France, Germany, China and Russian Federation - say they will not leave.

Pompeo and Trump have emphasized that they hope to target the country's government over its "malign activities" in the Middle East and its nuclear weapons.

The Iranian official also stressed that Iran's allies are seeking to find ways of defeating United States sanctions.

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The European Union, France, Germany and Britain said they regretted the US decision and would seek to protect European companies doing legitimate business with Tehran.

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