• Monday, Aug 10, 2020
  • Last Update : 12:58 pm

Iran, US in tense wait for world court sanctions ruling

  • Published at 01:05 pm October 1st, 2018
US_Iran
A staff member removes the Iranian flag from the stage after a group picture with foreign ministers and representatives of the US, Iran, China, Russia, Britain, Germany, France and the European Union during the Iran nuclear talks at the Vienna International Center in Vienna, Austria July 14, 2015 Reuters

Accusing Washington of ‘strangling’ its economy, Tehran has asked the court in The Hague to order Washington to lift the measures, reimposed after US President Donald Trump pulled out of a multilateral 2015 accord

The International Court of Justice will hand down an eagerly awaited decision this week on Iran's demand for the suspension of debilitating nuclear-related sanctions imposed by the United States.

Accusing Washington of "strangling" its economy, Tehran has asked the court in The Hague to order Washington to lift the measures, reimposed after US President Donald Trump pulled out of a multilateral 2015 accord.

Despite its long enmity with the United States, Iran brought the case under a 1955 "friendship treaty" that predates the country's Islamic Revolution.

Washington has forcefully told the court, which rules on disputes between United Nations member states, that it has no jurisdiction to rule on the case as it concerns a matter of national security.

The ruling on Wednesday at 0800 GMT -- in the grand surroundings of the 1913-built Peace Palace in the Dutch city -- follows four days of hearings at the end of August.

Rulings by the ICJ are binding and cannot be appealed, but it has no way to enforce its decisions.

"If the court orders measures, they should be respected," Eric De Brabandere, a professor of international law at the University of Leiden, told AFP.

If the court decides it has jurisdiction, it will likely "declare that the parties should refrain from aggravating the dispute", but any steps beyond this remain to be seen, he said.

The 2015 nuclear deal saw Iran agree to limit its nuclear program and let in international inspectors in return for an end to years of sanctions by the West.

But Trump pulled out of the deal in May, to the dismay of European allies, arguing that funds from the lifting of sanctions under the pact had been used to support terrorism and build nuclear-capable missiles.

'Economic warfare'

At the United Nations General Assembly last week, Trump denounced the deal as "horrible" and "one-sided".

During the ICJ hearings, Iran said the sanctions reintroduced in September are causing economic suffering for its citizens. US lawyers retorted that economic mismanagement was at the root of Iran's woes.

A second wave of US measures is due to hit Iran in early November, targeting its vital oil exports.

Experts said the Iran-US case was an important opportunity for the ICJ to rule on the issue of "economic warfare" -- not currently designated as a use of force.

The case "may offer the court sufficient legal basis to indicate a limit under international law to coercion by the US," Geoff Gordon, an international law expert at the Asser Institute in The Hague, told AFP.

"International law, for reasons to do with power politics, has never formally recognized economic warfare to be a use of force as prohibited by the UN Charter, though economic sanctions can have the same effects and worse as guns and bombs."

But he warned that "the decision is likely to be occasion for escalating tensions."

Relations have plunged to a new low since Trump's election, even as the US president reaches out to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un over his nuclear program.

Trump and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani faced off at the UN last week, with Rouhani denouncing leaders with "xenophobic tendencies resembling a Nazi disposition."

Despite their 1955 Treaty of Amity and Economic Relations, Iran and the United States have not had diplomatic ties since 1980.

The ICJ was set up in 1946, after the carnage of World War II, to rule in disputes between countries.


54
54
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail