BEIRUT, LEBANON (4:20 P.M.) – U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Tuesday that the United States will prevent Iran from acquiring Russian and Chinese weapons, despite the fact the international arms embargo on Iran expires on October 18.
According to Asharq Al-Awsat, Pompeo told “France Inter” radio on Tuesday: “Nothing has been done so far to enable the extension of this ban, and therefore the United States assumed its responsibilities,” referring to the differences between Americans and Europeans in this regard.
He added, “We will act in this manner. We will prevent Iran from acquiring Chinese tanks and Russian air defense systems, and after that, selling weapons to Hezbollah undermines the efforts of French President Emmanuel Macron in Lebanon.”
In 2018, the United States withdrew from the agreement on the Iranian nuclear program, and subsequently re-imposed harsh sanctions on Iran, which it accused of having an expansionist tendency in the Middle East by supporting local groups such as Hezbollah in Lebanon.
On August 21, Washington activated at the United Nations the “Snapback” mechanism to re-impose international sanctions on Iran, including an extension of the arms embargo.
The overwhelming majority of Security Council members (13 out of 15), including the countries participating in the Iran nuclear deal, rejected the validity of the mechanism implemented by the United States to extend the sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
According to these countries, Washington has been withdrawn from the nuclear deal since 2018, and does not have a legal basis to launch a mechanism for re-imposing international sanctions at the United Nations in this context.