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US Levies Most Stringent Sanctions on Iran

US president Trump has levied its toughest sanctions till date against Iran this last week sparking mass protests across the country against by its citizens.  The sanctions had been removed just in 2015 after decades of suffering during Obama’s administration after Iran agreed to curb its nuclear plans. The reinstated sanctions are targeted towards Iran and nations that trade with it and will hit Iran’s oil exports, shipping and banking industry. While people held rallies and rejected calls for discussions, Iranian president Hassan Rouhani has vowed to find buyers for its oil and break the sanctions. Its military has quoted that it will hold air defense drill to show the country’s capabilities to defend against any armed attacks.

President Trump said that these sanctions are being carried out to stop Tehran’s maligning campaign against United States that include cyber-attacks, ballistic missile tests, support for terrorist groups in Syria and violent militia groups in Middle East. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Fox News that US is working diligently to support Iranian people and their activities are aimed at ensuring that Iran’s malign behavior changes for the better. The latest sanctions list has 700 individuals, vessels, aircraft and other entities that include banks, oil exporters and shipping companies.

Mr. Mike Pompeo has declared that around 100 international firms have withdrawn from Iran due to the sanctions and its oil exports had fallen by one million barrels a day thereby choking its main source of income. But these sanctions have been objected to by European nations like UK, Germany and France that are among five nations to stay committed to the original nuclear pact signed with Iran. They have promised to support firms that are doing legitimate business with Iran and have set up an alternative payment mechanism to help firms continue their business relations without facing penalties of US sanctions. But this is not likely to lessen the impact on Iran though US has allowed its allies comprising of Italy, Japan, South Korea, India, Turkey and China to continue buying oil from Iran.S

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