SHAFAQNA – In a press conference today, Iran’s FM spokeswoman has criticized the US for imposing new sanctions on individuals and companies on the pretext of breaching Washington’s sanctions against Tehran.
The United States has imposed new economic sanctions on nine targets, including six people and three companies from Iran, Afghanistan, and Saint Kitts and Nevis, accusing them of violating anti-Iran sanctions imposed by the US.
Marzieh Afkham condemned this new move by the US government and considered it ‘a violation of the Geneva deal’ at the time that the nuclear talks between Iran and the six states are under way.
“Such a move amounts to a blatant violation of the US good will,” said Afkham at the same time stressing that Iran did not feel duty-bound by sanctions and the new politically-motivated sanctions would have ‘no practical impact’ on relations of Iran and other countries.
“Sanctions are an inefficient and unconstructive mechanism whether to be used against Iran or any other country. While they would complicate the situation, we believe that the nuclear talks should be held in a positive atmosphere irrespective of other developments,” said Afkham, clarifying that Iran was adamant not to let some wrong domestic policies adopted by the US affect the negotiations.
Afkham also announced that the next round of nuclear talks would be held on January 15 at a deputy level in Geneva. There was no plan for other talks ahead of that date, Afkham clarified.
On the issue regarding the fall in oil prices and the speculations on the Saudi Arabia’s role, Afkham first dismissed the claims that Iran had sent a letter to Riyadh on oil prices, and maintained that this was not the first time the oil market took a hit in regard to prices plummet; “however, the fact that it coincided with some regional developments has given weight to certain speculations on whether the decision has been politically-motivated,” said Afkham, stressing that while the OPEC countries could have made a better decision, one could not say one single country had been solely responsible in the decision-making.
As to the upcoming visit of Hamas Political Bureau Chief Khaled Meshaal to Iran, Afkham confirmed the trip but said no exact date had been set yet. She also maintained that the relations between Hamas and Tehran are running their normal course and the talks are continuing.
In regard to the threats posed by the ISIL against Iran, Afkham first expressed her condolences on the martyrdom of Brigadier General Hamid Taqavi who was killed while on advisory mission in the holy city of Samarra and added that Iran has always warned against the dangers of terrorism.
“It is obvious that ISIL is a means in order to tip the balance in the region based on what some certain powers have in mind,” said Afkham, asserting that countries are gradually admitting that the US-led coalition against ISIL has not been effective.
“Terrorism is not limited to a certain region. All countries need to join hands to tackle this threat,” said Afkham.