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Trump: Newly reimposed Iran sanctions ‘most biting’ in history

The Hill logo The Hill 8/7/2018 Kyle Balluck

President Trump in an early morning tweet on Tuesday labeled newly reimposed sanctions on Iran the "most biting ... ever."

"The Iran sanctions have officially been cast. These are the most biting sanctions ever imposed, and in November they ratchet up to yet another level. Anyone doing business with Iran will NOT be doing business with the United States," he said. "I am asking for WORLD PEACE, nothing less!"

The sanctions, which took effect at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, follow through on the order Trump gave when he withdrew from the Obama-era Iran nuclear pact earlier this year.

Donald Trump, Hassan Rouhani are posing for a picture © Provided by The Hill

Trump had promised on the campaign trail to tear up what he called the "worst deal ever negotiated," which eased sanctions on Iran in exchange for limits on Tehran's nuclear ambitions.

In a statement on Monday, he said the U.S. is "fully committed" to enforcing the sanctions, adding that individuals and entities that fail to wind down activities with Iran "risk severe consequences."

Administration officials, meanwhile, pointed to Iran's ongoing civil unrest and economic woes and reiterated Trump's openness to meeting with Iranian leaders in announcing the sanctions action on Monday.

"The president has been very clear: none of this needs to happen," a senior administration official told reporters on a background briefing call. "He will meet with Iranian leadership at any time to discuss a real, comprehensive deal that will contain their regional ambitions, will end their malign behavior and deny them any paths to a nuclear weapon."

The newly reimposed sanctions target transactions with U.S. dollar banknotes; trade in gold and precious metals; direct or indirect sales of graphite and metals such as steel and aluminum; certain transactions related to the Iranian rial; certain transactions related to issuing Iranian sovereign debt; and Iran's automotive sector.

Authorizations will also be revoked for the import of Iranian-origin carpets and foodstuff and the export of commercial aircraft.

U.S. sanctions on oil sales are scheduled to snap back in early November.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani reportedly said during an interview on state television just before the sanctions were reimposed that he would welcome talks with the U.S. without preconditions.

"If there is sincerity, Iran has always welcomed dialogue and negotiations," Rouhani said, according to CNN.

National security adviser John Bolton said, however, that the offer might be "just more propaganda," the network added.


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