By staff and agency

Russia to continue trade with Iran regardless of U.S. sanctions

July 9, 2019

Russian Permanent Representative to the European Union Vladimir Chizhov has said that Russia will ignore the U.S. sanctions against Iran and will continue trade with the country without creating any special mechanisms.

“Our colleagues here [in Brussels] sometimes ask why Russia and China do not create their own INSTEX [Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges]. To that we answer with the question: why do we need it? We have already traded and will trade without paying any attention to U.S. sanctions,” Sputnik quoted him as saying on Tuesday.

The day before, the Finnish government said that it was considering joining a trading system that core EU members set up to bypass U.S. sanctions on Iran.

The EU announced on June 28 that its special financial mechanism for trade with Iran, known as INSTEX, has gone into effect. 

INSTEX – the Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges - is a European special purpose vehicle aimed at facilitating legitimate trade between Europe and Iran.

Iran says the mechanism is far short of Iran’s expectation. Iran insists the mechanism should include Iran’s oil purchases.

Majid Takht Ravanchi, Iran’s permanent representative to the United Nations, has likened INSTEX to a “beautiful car without gasoline”.

“The current situation of INSTEX does not suffice. This mechanism without money is like a beautiful car without gasoline,” he told reporters on June 29.

On Sunday, Iran announced that it has started enriching uranium to a higher purity than the 3.67%, as the Europeans missed a 60-day deadline by Tehran to devise a concrete mechanism to protect the country from the U.S. sanctions.

On May 8, Iran announced a partial withdrawal from some aspects of the nuclear pact, saying that the country would no longer adhere to some of the limits on its nuclear activities. It also threatened to step up uranium enrichment if an agreement is not made within 60 days to protect it from the sanctions’ effects. 

However, Iran has said if the remaining parties take concrete steps to shield Iran from sanctions it will reverse its decisions.

NA/PA

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