Pompeo: Sanctions 'Just a Part' of Iran Regime Behavior-Change Plan

US threatens to smack SWIFT with sanctions if it fails to cut off financial services to Iran

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the sanctions were "aimed at fundamentally altering the behaviour" of Iran.

Turkey has been told it will temporarily be allowed to keep buying Iranian oil, its energy minister told reporters, as has Iraq, as long as it does not pay Iran in US dollars, three Iraqi officials said.

The threat of sanctions has seen the Iranian rial plummet and business owners have said they are afraid of what they will do to the country's economy. "These concessions are critical to ensuring that we increase our maximum pressure campaign and accelerate towards zero", Pompeo said. Pompeo said they are created to "alter the Iranian regime's behavior", especially its support of terrorist groups like Hezbollah.

US President Donald Trump said on Friday that the country's objective is to force the Iranian regime to "either abandon its destructive behavior or continue down the path toward economic disaster".

The United States' European allies expressed regret at the Trump administration actions, and resolved to try to keep the deal if Iran continues to comply. The book, which the Post reported on in July, was released in time for the August 6 less-damaging United States sanctions.

But other countries, including those of the European Union, believe Iran is holding to its part of the bargain on the nuclear deal and have made clear their intention not to follow America's lead.

Foreign ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi told state TV that Iran had "the knowledge and the capability to manage the country's economic affairs".

"It has to do with the fact that the anniversary coincides with the deadline by the United States to reimpose sanctions that were lifted by the 2015 nuclear deal", he said.

However, ordinary Iranians fear an even more painful squeeze on living costs, from businesses struggling to buy raw materials to the sick and elderly unable to afford life-saving medicines.

US President Donald Trump withdrew from its 2015 nuclear deal with Iran in May, describing it as "defective at its core".

Most worldwide sanctions on Iran were lifted in early 2016 under a deal Iran signed with world powers the year before under which it curbed its uranium enrichment programme, widely seen overseas as a disguised effort to develop an atomic bomb.

Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei said on Saturday the U.S. has been trying for the past 40 years to regain the domination it had over Iran under the Shah but to no avail.

The names of more than 700 individuals, entities, vessels and aircraft will be put on the sanctions list, including major banks, oil exporters and shipping companies.

The US will allow the eight nations to import Iranian oil but only at much lower levels after the reimposition of sanctions on Monday, Pompeo said.

Last year, Taiwan imported 4 million barrels of oil from Iran, or 2.86 percent of its total imports, which would drop by half during the current year, according to CPC. It has also sought a carve out from curbs on ports for Chabahar port in Iran which it has helped develop and uses as gateway to Afghanistan and Central Asia.

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