The Trump administration has reinstated sanctions on Iran, the same sanctions that were in place before President Obama brokered and signed the Iran Nuclear Deal in 2015.
The move was announced by Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin in an Op-Ed for the Financial Times published Monday.
“In the early hours of Monday, the Treasury Department will complete its full snapback of sanctions on Iran, targeting the energy, shipping and banking sectors, among others,” Mnuchin wrote. “We are also adding back hundreds of targets previously removed from sanctions lists, as well as more than 300 new targets. This will end the relief the Barack Obama administration granted in the false hope of a change in the Iranian regime’s behaviour.”
From the perspective of the Trump administration, Iran has not acted in accordance with the deal and has engaged in activity contrary to American interests.
“From its support of Syria’s brutal Bashar al-Assad regime and the Houthis in Yemen, to missile attacks on its neighbours, the Iranian regime actually grew more aggressive. Its increasingly brazen actions highlighted the deal’s fundamental flaws and reinforced the decision to withdraw,” Mnuchin wrote.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has accused President Trump of engaging in “economic war.” Iran has also said it intends to defy the sanctions.
Mnuchin has written specifically about why the sanctions have been restored as a path to a potential new deal with the Iranians. President Trump and President Rouhani have not been on the best of terms, most notably expressed in Trump’s tweets this summer. But perhaps more economic pressure will force the Iranians to come to the negotiation table. And hopefully the United States has specific demands for the regime particular results in mind.