The United States said on Wednesday it plans to impose sanctions on those who violate a UN arms embargo on Iran, which Washington says will now stay in place instead of expiring in October as agreed under a 2015 nuclear deal.
US Special Representative for Venezuela and Iran Elliott Abrams said Washington could deny access to the US market to anyone who trades in weapons with Iran.
In 2018, Trump quit the flawed Iran nuclear deal due to ongoing Iranian belligerence in the region and continued development of its ballistic missile capabilities and reimposed US sanctions. Washington also says it has triggered a return of all UN sanctions on Iran, which would take effect this weekend.
But the other parties to the nuclear deal -- Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia -- and most of the UN Security Council have said they do not believe the United States can reimpose the UN sanctions.
"It's like pulling a trigger and no bullet comes out," a senior UN Security Council diplomat said on condition of anonymity. "There will be no snapback, the sanctions will remain suspended, the JCPOA (nuclear deal) will remain in place."
Asked if Washington is "making concrete plans now for secondary sanctions" to enforce the arms embargo, Abrams told reporters: "We are, in many ways, and we will have some announcements over the weekend and more announcements on Monday and then subsequent days next week."
Diplomats have said few nations are likely to reimpose UN sanctions on Iran.
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