US sanctions to widen Iran-West gap

US sanctions to widen Iran-West gap
Thu Aug 1, 2013 19:56:59

Tehran has reiterated that the US tightening sanctions would widen the gap between the Islamic Republic and the west, notably the difference over Iran's peaceful nuclear program.

“Imposing sanctions against Iran is a failed policy and will definitely not help find a logical solution to the existing problems, especially with regard to negotiations on the nuclear issue,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Seyyed Abbas Araqchi said on Thursday.

On Wednesday, the US House of Representatives endorsed a bill to impose tougher sanctions against Iran’s oil exports and other economic sectors.

The bill, which must be approved by the Senate and signed by President Barack Obama to come into force, is aimed at cutting Iran's oil exports by one million barrels per day over a year.

It also blacklists any business in Iran's automotive, mining and construction sectors and commits the United States to the goal of ending all Iranian oil sales worldwide by 2015.

Araqchi expressed surprise at Washington’s perverseness in mounting restrictions on Tehran, underlining the futility of such bans and their failure to alter the Islamic Republic’s fundamental positions.

“The only impact the imposition of sanctions will have is to further complicate the settlement of the existing issues, and will certainly offer no solution to any problem,” he stressed.

The US has imposed several rounds of illegal sanctions on Iran, which Washington claims to be aimed at pressuring Tehran to abandon its nuclear energy program.

The United States, Israel, and some of their allies have repeatedly accused Iran of potentially pursuing non-civilian objectives in its nuclear energy program.

Tehran has categorically rejected the accusation, arguing that as a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty and a committed member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), it is entitled to develop nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.

In addition, numerous inspections of Iran's nuclear facilities by the IAEA have found no smoking gun to indicate that the Iranian nuclear energy program has been diverted toward non-civilian purposes.

Meanwhile, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov who said that United Nations Security Council sanctions already in place against Tehran were sufficient. He suggested the US bill, which still has more steps to clear before becoming law, was counterproductive.

"Any additional sanctions are actually aimed at the economic strangulation of Iran, but not at solving the problem of non-proliferation," Gatilov said.

“They (Iranians) have solid proof indicating that they cannot build confidence on us,” Gary G. Sick, the veteran US politician said after US House representatives slapped Iran with new round of sanctions.

The US decision puts rubber stamp on the Iranian viewpoint, the Columbia University professor and the author of several books on Iran-US relations, said.



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