US angered by Europe’s refusal to extend sanctions on Iran

State Department signals its frustration with European Union due to unwillingness to extend sanctions on Iran for sponsoring terrorism and developing ballistic missiles.

JERUSALEM POST STAFF MARCH 12, 2020 04:50

International Conference on Human Resource Development for Nuclear Programmes: Building and Sustaining Capacity. Strategy for Education and Training, Networking and Knowledge Management. IAEA Vienna, Austria, 16 May 2014. (photo credit: DEAN CALMA / IAEA)
International Conference on Human Resource Development for Nuclear Programmes: Building and Sustaining Capacity. Strategy for Education and Training, Networking and Knowledge Management. IAEA Vienna, Austria, 16 May 2014.  (photo credit: DEAN CALMA / IAEA)

The US State Department has expressed its outrage at the European Union for refusing to set greater international coordination on maintaining the sanctions regime aimed towards pressuring Iran over its continued sponsorship of terrorism and developing ballistic missile program, according to a report released by the Washington Free Beacon.

As an apparent indication of the growing divide between the Trump Administration and their European allies on the issue of Iran, the report notes that Europe’s alleged unwillingness to take a unified approach has led to the anger of hardliners in the US. European leaders have continued to stress that new sanctions may prompt the withdrawal of Iran from the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

A senior State Department official, speaking off the record, confirmed to the Free Beacon that the Trump administration continues to push its European allies towards unified action.

Similarly, it was noted that the US has especially been pressuring the United Kingdom following its withdrawal from the EU, sensing an opportunity to create an anti-Iran front

“We have repeatedly asked the EU and the [United Kingdom] to match our sanctions on the Iranian regime, particularly on Iran’s nuclear and missile program, but also on Iran’s terrorist proxies. But there is still great fear within the E3 [France, Germany, and Italy] that sanctioning Iran will jeopardize the nuclear deal. With the U.K. out of the EU, we do see a renewed opportunity for the U.K. to sanction the regime. We will keep pressing the point,” a State Department spokesman said

The renewed effort by the United States comes amid new battles set to be waged in the United Nations, as Russia has vowed to block American efforts for avoiding the expiration of a ban on Iran’s procurement of advanced missiles. The report also noted that Washington hopes Europe follows its lead, viewing UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson as instrumental in its goal.

“The Europeans have never let go of the Iran deal, which is why they continue to oppose any new sanctions on Iran The mullahs blew up 5 percent of global oil supply, stormed the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, took British and other European citizens hostage, arrested the British ambassador, murdered 1,500 people in the streets, and blew a passenger jet out of the sky—zero sanctions in response. At some point, someone in Europe needs to stand up and say Iran is not our friend, America is our strongest ally, and we are going to do what we can to stop the mullahs from building nuclear weapons with long-range missiles to hit London,” the former State Department official said.

“Boris Johnson could be that leader but it all starts with snapback at the Security Council to open the floodgates,” the former official added.

March 12, 2020 | Comments » | 220 views

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