By Prarthana Mitra
As the Rial continues to dips to less than half its value in five months, Iran is willing to risk amity with the United States and open a lawsuit at the International Court of Justice. Government officials in Tehran said the recently renewed economic sanctions from the US have taken a severe toll on the currency. Even if this move could potentially nullify a treaty of mutual amity dating back to 1955, it could not hurt Iran more than the reforms already have.
Financial pressure mounts as the Rial continues its downward spiral
As the United Nations top court prepares for what could be a bitter legal battle, Iran will fight tooth and nail against the newly reimposed sanctions which U.S. President Donald Trump announced earlier this month. In addition to the existing sanctions, a second round of sanctions is imminent in November, targeting Iran’s valuable oil and energy sector.
The U.S. had no right to reinstate such measures, Tehran added, demanding compensation for damages caused.
The move brought back some harsh penalties into effect, three years after they had been lifted during Barack Obama’s presidency. Earlier this year, Trump called the 2015 agreement a “horrible one-sided deal [that] failed to achieve the fundamental objective of blocking all paths to a Iranian nuclear bomb.”
Pulling out of the treaty despite objections from other member nations, Trump reimposed the sanctions and threatened European nations against conducting business on Iranian soil. Several French and German companies have already suspended their operations, adding to the worsening economic crisis. Both Air France and British Airways announced on Thursday they were going to halt flights to Tehran next month, as financial pressure mounts for the middle-eastern nation.
Accusing the US of overturning the historic deal to cause intentional and “irreparable prejudice“, Iran had filed a case with the ICJ in late July, asking the tribunal’s judges to lift the sanctions immediately.
Trump said he believes these sanctions will turn up the pressure on Iran to arrive at a “comprehensive and lasting solution” regarding its “ballistic missile programme and its support for terrorism.” However, Iranian president Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has ruled out any possibility of negotiations.
Provided the ICJ has jurisdiction on the matter, the first order of business for the Hague-based tribunal, will be looking into Iran’s request for a provisional ruling. However, working on the final decision could take years.
Prarthana Mitra is a staff writer at Qrius
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