On September 19th, the Trump administration imposed new sanctions against Iran. These sanctions follow Resolution 2231, which endorsed a state participant triggering a “snap back” mechanism from the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JPCOA). In invoking this clause, the U.S referred to Iran’s “significant non-compliance” with the nuclear deal. The new sanctions are meant to curb Tehran’s nuclear program and will last indefinitely. National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien sated on Monday, that the sanctions would target 27 entities and individuals involved in Iran’s Nuclear weapons program.
As stated by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, “For nearly two years, corrupt officials in Tehran have worked with the illegitimate regime in Venezuela to flout the U.N. arms embargo. Our actions today are a warning that should be heard worldwide. No matter who you are, if you violate the U.N. arms embargo on Iran, you risk sanctions.” China and Russia however have rejected the U.S positions and will continue the weapons sales with Iran until after the U.S. elections. Britain, France and Germany believe that the announcement did not have any legal effect, and also will continue with the nuclear deal.
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres stated that the United Nations would not re-impose sanctions against Iran until the green light is given from the Security Council. Thirteen of it’s fifteen members rejected the U.S positions, seeing it as meaningless. This is due to the fact that the U.S had withdrawn from the nuclear deal in 2018, with President Donald Trump stating it was the most terrible “deal in history” along with his U.S campaign to implement maximum pressure on Iran. The U.S however has disagreed with the U.N claiming that they still were participants to reimpose sanctions. Meanwhile, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javid Zarif claims that the sanctions are nothing new and will have no significant impact on Iran, as the U.S has already exerted all the pressure it could.
The sanctions currently imposed on Iran restrict banking and have led to the lack of availability in food and medicine, as well as a recession. Human rights groups claim the restrictions prevented Iran from fighting COVID-19 at the beginning, with more than 60,000 infected and 3700 deaths in. An NGO in November 2019 had reported that Iranian children with special skin conditions known as EB are losing their lives due to the U.S sanctions, which have hampered access for so many Iranians while preventing refuges from receiving vital medicine and care.