US Ordered to Halt 'Humanitarian' Iran Sanctions in Blow for Trump

04 October, 2018, 01:45 | Author: Kim Reid
  • The United Nations flag flutters in the wind next to the International Court of Justice in the Hague the Netherlands

The UN's top court will rule Wednesday on Iran's bid to suspend crippling United States sanctions reimposed by President Donald Trump after he pulled out of the worldwide nuclear deal with Tehran.

Iran has invoked a little known 1955 Treaty of Amity that was signed before Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution, which caused a sharp deterioration in bilateral ties that has endured until today.

"I'm announcing that the United States is terminating the 1955 Treaty of Amity with Iran", Pompeo said during a briefing announcing the termination of the agreement.

Hours later, during the White House news conference, National Security Advisor John Bolton announced the U.S. is withdrawing from yet another treaty with Iran made before the United Nation's court - a court which Bolton says is ineffective.

The court unanimously said that the United States must remove trade sanctions on medicines and medical devices, foodstuffs and agricultural commodities, spare part and equipments necessary for the safety of civil aviation. The top U.N. court, which is located in The Hague, does not have the power to enforce its decisions, which are usually ignored by the United States anyway. Iran brought its case before the ICJ in The Hague, Netherlands, in July.

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Iran took the U.S. to the ICJ twice; first in 1988 over the downing of Iran Air flight 655 and the killing of all 290 people on board and in 1992 in relations to United States attacks on Iranian oil rigs in 1987 and 1988.

Following the ruling, the Iranian Foreign Ministry also released a statement saying it "sees eye to eye" with the ICJ which has ruled against sanctions on Iran.

He then announced the US would terminate the Amity treaty which formed the basis of Iran's suit against the U.S. "It rightly rejected all of Iran's baseless requests", Pompeo told reporters.

Following the ICJ verdict, Iran's foreign minister called on the global community to collectively fight US unilateralism.

The United States says it is canceling a decades-old friendship treaty with Iran after Tehran cited it in an worldwide court case against Washington's sanctions policy.

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The court said the case will continue and the US can still challenge its jurisdiction but no date has been set for further hearings.

He cited a case brought to the court by the "so-called state of Palestine" challenging the move of the US Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem as the main reason for withdrawing, according to the Associated Press.

But Trump pulled out of the deal in May, arguing that funds from the lifting of sanctions under the pact had been used to support terrorism and build nuclear-capable missiles.

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani praised Europe on Wednesday for taking a "big step" to maintain business with Tehran after the United States' unilateral withdrawal from the deal.

Bolton also told a White House briefing that Washington will review all global agreements that "may still expose the United States to purported binding jurisdiction, dispute resolution" in the ICJ.

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Bolton, who last month unleashed a torrent of criticism against the International Criminal Court, noted that previous Republican administrations had pulled out of various international agreements and bodies over "politicized cases".

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