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U.S. Pressure On Iran Is 'State Terrorism,' Says Tehran's U.N. Envoy

Iran Foreign Minster Javad Zarif and Iranian diplomat Majid Takht-Ravanchi

Iran's Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Majid Takht Ravanchi, says Washington's policy of maximum pressure on Tehran is designed to change Iran's "regime."

The Iranian Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, added that U.S. sanctions imposed on Iran's banking system aims at "starving people of Iran."

Quoting Ravanchi on Friday, October 9, the state-run Mehr News Agency (MNA) reported, "At a meeting of the U.N. General Assembly Sixth Committee on Counter-Terrorism," Islamic Republic's envoy deplored the U.S. policy of maximum pressure on Tehran an example of "state terrorism," by "creating social unrest" in the country.

Ravanchi went on to say that the U.S.' "unilateral coercive" measures "have affected our economy" and "severely exacerbated general health conditions amidst the novel coronavirus epidemic."

He referred to Washington's unilateral withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iran's 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

President Donald Trump exited the deal in May 2018 and imposed sanctions on Iran's already troubled economy.

Pursuing its "maximum pressure policy," the U.S. announced last Thursday that it blacklisted 18 other Iranian banks that had previously been exempted from penalties.

Iranian authorities, including President Hassan Rouhani, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, and the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) Governor, Abdol Nasser Hemmati, have since reacted to the new batch of sanctions, with Rouhani claiming that the sanctions on Iranian banks are politically motivated.

Rouhani made the remarks in a phone talk with the CBI Governor on Friday, referring to the U.S.' "miscalculation in withdrawing from the JCPOA" and claiming, "The U.S. government, based on a misguided analysis, believed that these sanctions would crush Iran's resistance and cause us trouble, but time has indicated that this analysis is far from the truth and has been ineffective."

Zarif also tweeted on Thursday, "Amid Covid-19 pandemic, U.S. regime wants to blow up our remaining channels to pay for food & medicine. Iranians WILL survive this latest of cruelties. But conspiring to starve a population is a crime against humanity. Culprits & enablers—who block our money—WILL face justice."

Zarif went further by threatening Washington with dire consequences.

"Colluding to starve a nation is a crime against humanity, and the commanders and executors who block our money will be brought to justice," Zarif warned.

Echoing Rouhani's comments, Hemmati also dismissed the new batch of U.S. sanctions as "ineffective."

The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC)-linked Tasnim news agency quoted Hemmati as saying that Washington's new move was more "for U.S. domestic propaganda and political purposes" than an economic one.

Hemmati further admitted that the U.S. government had created severe obstacles in the transfer of currency for the supply of medicine and food; however, due to the Central Bank's efforts, there has been no shortage in this regard.

While admitting to the U.S. sanctions' detrimental impact on Iran's economy, Iranian officials still promised to resist, stand up against Washington, and leave the crisis behind. However, they have not yet offered a strategy to save Iran's deteriorating economy under accelerating sanctions.

At the same time, the U.S. has repeatedly asserted that it will continue to exert maximum pressure on Iran until the nation's officials agree to negotiate with Washington.