Would The U.S. Sanction China For Buying Iranian Oil?

  • Would The U.S. Sanction China For Buying Iranian Oil?

Would The U.S. Sanction China For Buying Iranian Oil?

Brian Hook, the current director of Policy Planning in the State Department, will lead the group with the formal title of Special Representative for Iran. Hook led the Trump administration's ultimately unsuccessful attempt to negotiate changes to the nuclear deal with European allies before the president decided in May to pull out of the accord.

A man exchanges Iranian rials against USA dollars at an exchange shop in Tehran on August 8, 2018.

"We are prepared to impose secondary sanctions on other governments that continue this sort of trade with Iran", Hook noted.

"The need for an Iran action group-or any entity specializing in streamlining, coordinating and implementing Iran policy-is due to the challenge of balancing the myriad threats posed by the Islamic Republic, as well as the attention the president and other administration officials have rightly given to that threat", explained Ben Taleblu. "But we must see major changes in the regime's behavior both inside and outside its borders". Trump said the deal did not do enough to curb what he and USA allies have said are "malign" Iranian behaviors, such as its support for militant groups in the Middle East and development of ballistic missiles.

The Trump administration's exit from the Iran deal is also creating internal divisions within Iran's leadership.

The Iran nuclear deal was signed between six countries in 2015 - Iran, US, Britain, Germany, Russia, France and China for lifting economic sanctions on Tehran in exchange for limitations to the country's nuclear programme.

Hook said he met with German, French and British officials in London this week for "productive discussions on Iran", and "will continue to build on those areas where we are in agreement with our allies and partners around the world, and we will work to find consensus on those areas where we are not".

"For almost 40 years, the regime in Tehran has been responsible for a torrent of violent and destabilizing behavior against the United States, our allies, our partners, and indeed, the Iranian people themselves", said Pompeo.

More sanctions would be imposed on Iran in November, which includes barring Iran's sale of crude oil and transactions with its Central Bank.

Hook insisted that any overlap between Thursday's announcement and the anniversary of the US-backed 1953 coup against Iran's democratically elected government was "pure coincidence", despite speculation about the administration's views on regime change.

The secretary of state and former Central Intelligence Agency director also accused several members of Iran's leadership, including Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader of Iran, of participating in widespread corruption.

When asked about the Supreme leader and Rouhani divide making it hard for the U.S.to communicate at all with the Iranians, Hook brushed it off as something that they have to handle internally.

He added that "there have been White House czars before, study groups, as well as unconfirmed reports about Secretary Pompeo having a similar group to deal with the North Korea problem set in his previous government position [as Central Intelligence Agency director]".

They said Hook is expected to be replaced in that job by Kiron Skinner, a foreign policy academic who served very briefly on the State Department transition team after President Donald Trump took office.