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China Walks a Fine Line in Iran — Playing US Sanctions

15 May 2018
China Walks a Fine Line in Iran — Playing US Sanctions

Four days before a May 12 deadline he himself had set, Donald Trump junked the agreement.

President Hassan Rouhani addresses the nation in a televised speech in Tehran, Iran.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Sunday that the United States had failed to reach an agreement with the European nations on the historic Iran nuclear deal.

To be able to continue to purchase Iranian oil while sanctions were in place, China, for example, established the Bank of Kunlun to handle Chinese payments. Prices have gained over 8% over the past month and 15% since the beginning of the year. The country has been leading efforts since 2017 to withhold production to prop up prices. It did not announce immediate resumption of uranium enrichment, which it emphasised will be at the industrial level. That hits Europe most. Rather, the country is already adapting to a new world in which the prospect of rapprochement with the West is fading.

The president's decision ended what had become a fierce debate within the administration.

European oil companies are not ruling out reducing Iranian oil imports after the threat of new U.S. sanctions, with some expecting banking issues to hinder trade, but there was no rush to immediately cut volumes.

The limited scope of the accord left Tehran free to pursue its regional policies that could be viewed as unduly aggressive and at the expense of the geopolitical interest of other regional countries, including a number of Arab states. Tehran obviously wants to do as much business with Europe as it can and try to isolate Washington, which it can't. Obama himself led the "big mistake" chorus, issuing a lengthy statement bashing Trump for the decision. It is a part of their objective to create an Iranian sphere of influence extending from Iran proper to the Mediterranean Sea.

Washington D.C. [USA], May 14: Following United States' withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal, White House national security adviser John Bolton on Sunday said there is a possibility of secondary sanctions being imposed on the European companies doing business with Iran. "Either it's Iran or the U.S".

Israel has repeatedly targeted weapons shipments destined for Hezbollah, taking advantage of the group's thinly-spread fighters preoccupied by the war in Syria.

European countries have 60 days to provide "guarantees" to safeguard Iran's interests after the United States withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal, parliament's website said quoting an Iranian official.

"I heard one of the primary industry representatives postulating that it might mean, if nothing else, that it's more difficult to increase exports to iran who, of course, used to be a much larger trading partner of New Zealand than they are even now", Mr Parker said. In their view, a half-million people dead in Iran's client state, Syria, reveals Obama's reluctance to confront Tehran's bad behavior.

Macron's office said the two leaders spoke Saturday and the French leader expressed his "great concern about stability" in the region. They believe that the Europeans and, ultimately, the Iranians, will come back to the deal.

This is unedited, unformatted feed from the Press Trust of India wire. The only thing that could stand in their way is Iran. Trump's decision, however, is strategically incoherent.

Call it "buy now, pay later" - a phrase that can apply both literally and figuratively.

Saudi Arabia as well as the United Arab Emirates have suggested in recent months in their 11-month old economic and diplomatic boycott of Qatar that they are willing to quietly sanction those who fail to support them.