US plan to end Iranian oil exports ‘a fantasy’: Rouhani
05 July, 2018, 02:32 | Author: Diane Mills
However, when asked whether he meant to make a threat, Rouhani declined to provide a clarification.
General Soleimani's comments came after Rouhani appeared on Tuesday to threaten to disrupt oil shipments from neighbouring countries if Washington presses ahead with its goal of forcing all countries to stop buying Iranian oil. Between them, China, India, and Turkey account for about half of Iran's oil exports.
The daily singled out India saying among the major importers of Iranian crude oil, which also include China and Turkey, it was the only country buckling under USA pressure.
The European Union, once Iran's biggest oil importer, has vowed to keep the 2015 deal alive without the United States by trying to keep Iran's oil and investment flowing.
Signatories to the deal, including the European Union, have vowed to keep the 2015 deal alive without the USA by trying to keep Iran's oil and investment flowing, but have acknowledged that sanctions would make it hard to give Tehran guarantees.
New US sanctions against Tehran will encompass businesses from third countries that continue to operate in Iran. Rouhani has said Iran will stay in the accord if its interests are preserved.
And the move to take Iranian barrels off the market isn't the only thing that could send oil prices higher: Venezuelan oil production continues to decline, and Libya's ability to sustain even limited oil exports is in question given political turmoil in the country.
In May, US President Donald Trump announced that he would pull America out of a 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran and re-impose the sanctions that the deal had envisaged to be lifted.
An EU spokesperson said Brussels is in regular contact with Washington regarding the oil sanctions and stressed that "the EU remains fully committed to the nuclear deal and to the full and effective lifting of all nuclear-related sanctions on Iran".
Hanegbi's remarks came before senior diplomats from Iran, Britain, China, France, Germany and Russian Federation meet in Vienna on Friday, aiming to safeguard a pact reached in 2015. Iran has asked the European countries to come up with a new economic package to offset the US sanctions and preserve the accord.
The top diplomats of Britain, China, France, Germany and Russian Federation will join Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in the Austrian capital, Iran's official IRNA news agency reported, for their first talks together on the deal since Washington pulled out earlier this year.
"But this must be balanced and if signatories other than the USA can guarantee Iran's interests, Iran will stay in the deal without the US", he added.
Switzerland - where significant parts of the pact known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action were negotiated - will work to ensure that future U.S. sanctions do not target any humanitarian goods, Bern said in a statement.
Separately, Iran's interior minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli warned Tuesday that "if we close our eyes for 24 hours, 1 million refugees will go toward Europe through our Western borders" via Turkey.
The Iranian leader added that Iran will outlast the current American administration.
Rouhani was in Vienna, where his country's nuclear agreement with world powers was drawn up three years ago, to promote the deal's survival after the withdrawal of the United States. But European officials acknowledge that US sanctions make it hard to give Tehran guarantees.
The country accounts for about one-quarter of Iran's oil sales - some 600,000 barrels a day out of the roughly 2.2 million barrels a day that Iran exports - and Chinese demand for oil is growing at a steady clip.
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