By Javad Heirannia

I don't think Iranian officials will succumb to coercion of U.S.: David Phillips

July 3, 2018

TEHRAN - David L. Phillips, Director of the Program on Peace-building and Rights at Columbia University’s Institute for the Study of Human Rights, believes that “Through secondary sanctions, the U.S. can act unilaterally to punish foreign corporations doing business with Iran, especially foreign banks.”

Phillips, who is also a former senior adviser to the U.S. State Department and deputy director of the Council on Foreign Relations, believes that “Persian pride is a strong factor. I don't think Iranian officials will succumb to coercion.”

Following is a brief interview with David Phillips:

Q: What is your assessment about U.S. new sanction on Iran? Some argue that these new sanction will not effective as last sanctions that impose before JCPOA. What do you think?

A: It is important to understand President Trump's motive. US sanctions may be more than an effort to effect Iran's policy. They could also be vindictive.

Q: It is true that U.S. sanction after its withdrawal from JCPOA is unilaterally, but U.S. can impose its will on the other countries by imposing penalty on their corporations such as European ones and they oblige to give up Iran market. Then actually JCPOA will not fulfill Iranian goals. What is your opinion?

Through secondary sanctions, the US can act unilaterally to punish foreign corporations doing business with Iran, especially foreign banks.

Q: U.S. announced that the other countries should cut importing oil from Iran until November. If Iran could not export its oil do you think will stay in the agreement?

Each country will act according to its national interests. Some countries, like Turkey, are dependent on energy exports from Iran. Turkey has been violating US sanctions on Iran for years as evidenced by the trial of Reza Zarrab, which confirmed that sanctions-busting was sanctioned by the highest levels of the Turkish government.

Q: According new developments about JCPOA, what is your prediction about this agreement?

A: Trump is adamant about renegotiating the agreement to have a longer sunset clause and permanently dismantle Iran's nuclear program. Persian pride is a strong factor. I don't think Iranian officials will succumb to coercion.
 

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