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The UN’s International Court of Justice (ICJ) is assessing the evidence from Iran and the US in order to decide whether it can deal with the case. On Wednesday, Tehran urged the UN court to overturn the US nuclear sanctions.
Donald Trump dragged America out of a landmark deal and reimposed nuclear sanctions.
The move resulted in Iran taking the US to the ICJ in 2018.
This week, Iran’s Hamidreza Oloumiyazdi told the UN court the sanctions imposed by the US were a “clear breach” of the 1955 Treaty of Amity between the two nations.
Speaking over video link, Mr Oloumiyazdi said: “The US measures and the underlying policy of ‘maximum pressure’ disregard the very foundation of international law.”
Iran’s lawyer added how the sanctions were causing “hardship and suffering”.
He said there has been a record level plummet in Iran’s trade, food prices have almost doubled and the health system has been severely affected.
He continued: “All that matters now for the US administration is whether its measures are succeeding in destroying the Iranian economy and ruining the lives of millions of Iranians.”
On Wednesday, the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said America will enforce new UN sanctions on Iran from next week.
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He said: “The United States will do what it always does.
“It will do its share as part of its responsibilities to enable peace, this time in the Middle East.
“We’ll do all the things we need to do to make sure that those sanctions are enforced.”
The US insisted that the UN’s court should reject the case as the sanctions have little to do with the Treaty of Amity.
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The treaty predates the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran which caused ties between the two nations to split.
America ended the treaty in 2018 following the UN’s orders to ease sanctions on humanitarian goods while the case is being assessed.
The US urged that its sanctions were important due to Iran’s “grave threat” to international security.
Mr Trump pulled the US out of the 2015 nuclear deal which includes the UK, China, France, Russia and Germany.
The agreement gave Iran relief on sanctions in exchange for reducing its nuclear programme.
But Iran increased its nuclear exercises last year due to the America’s reinforced sanctions.
The ICJ’s decision on jurisdiction could take many months and the final ruling may even take years.
On Wednesday, the US said it would impose the “full force” of America’s sanctions on any international arms manufacturers who work with Iran if the UN reimposes sanctions on Iran.
The UN Security Council has shown a lack of support to Washington’s aims to reinstate sanctions on Iran next week.
In August the council rejected the US attempt to extend an international arms sanction on Iran which is set to expire in October.
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