The Latest: Erdogan criticizes sanctions as destabilizing

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — The Latest on the situation in Iran after the re-imposition of all American sanctions on the country (all times local):

3:15 p.m.

Despite being granted a waiver, Turkey’s president has criticized the resumption of sanctions on Iran calling it a destabilizing step.

Speaking to reporters in Parliament on Tuesday, Recep Tayyip Erdogan also said the sanctions contravene international law and diplomacy, according to state-run Anadolu Agency.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration resumed sanctions on Iran on Monday, although Turkey is among eight major importers of Iranian oil who are spared temporarily from immediate penalties.

Anadolu quoted Erdogan as saying: “We do not find sanctions to be right because to us, they are sanctions aimed at upsetting the global balance.”

Asked about Turkey’s “roadmap” for when the temporary waiver is lifted, Erdogan recalled Turkey’s dependence on oil and natural gas imports and said he cannot allow his citizens to “freeze in winter.”

“We cannot abide by them (the sanctions), we cannot accept them,” Erdogan said.


3:05 p.m.

Iran’s deputy foreign minister holds out little hope for negotiations to ease tensions between Iran and the United States now that the Trump administration has re-imposed sanctions.

Ambassador Seyed M. Kazem Sajjadpour said in London on Tuesday that the United States has the “very simple naive” view that Iran will wilt under the pressure.

“The assumption is, we cut the money of the oil, then Iran will be deprived, then Iranian people will revolt, then the system will be changed, then we are fine, then the paradise will come,” he said in a Chatham House talk

He says this view “negates the reality of Iran and the realities of foreign politics.”

Sajjadpour says Iran is self-confident and will not be forced to negotiate by having a knife put to its throat.


12:20 p.m.

Japan says it is pleased to be temporarily spared from penalties as the U.S. resumes sanctions on Iran.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga, however, told reporters Tuesday that Japan will monitor and analyze any possible impact the sanctions may have to make sure the sanctions do not adversely affect Japanese companies.

President Donald Trump’s administration reinstated all remaining sanctions on Iran on Monday.

A U.S. ally, Japan is one of eight major importers of Iranian oil that received waivers on immediate penalties.

Suga said Japan’s exclusion reflects Washington’s consideration of Tokyo’s repeated requests to minimize the impact of sanctions on Japanese companies.

He said Japan will continue to cooperate closely and discuss the issue with the U.S. side.


10:50 a.m.

The U.S.’s self-described “largest-ever” sanctions list targeting Iran includes an oil tanker already sunk and a bank long since closed.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif late Monday in a tweet called the re-imposition of sanctions a desperate move and said they target ordinary Iranians.

The sanctions by the U.S. Treasury Department target, among other things, the oil tanker Sanchi that sank in January after a week of burning off the coast of China, killing all 32 crew on board.

The list also includes Tat Bank, which was dissolved in 2012 over lack of transparency and financial charges.


9:30 a.m.

South Korea’s presidential spokesman says the U.S. has demonstrated the strength of the two countries’ alliance by allowing South Korea to continue importing Iranian crude oil products under reinstated sanctions against Iran.

Kim Eui-kyeom spoke to reporters Tuesday after South Korea was named as one of eight countries that received waivers from the United States to continue importing Iranian crude and other petroleum products without penalty.

South Korean Trade Minister Kim Hyun-chong says the waiver “opens breathing room” for South Korea’s oil refining industry and companies that export to Iran.

South Korea says it can also continue exporting non-sanctioned products to Iran after the United States agreed to recognize a transaction system where local companies receive payments through two Korean won-denominated accounts that Iran’s central bank opened in South Korea.

Categories: International News