WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump said Thursday all American sanctions against Iran will be in full force on November 5, as he signed into law another legislation imposing hard-hitting sanctions on Lebanese militant group Hezbollah.
“On November 5th, all US sanctions against Iran lifted by the nuclear deal will be back in full force, every sanction that we had on their originally, which would have — if they would have just left it a little bit longer, would have been so much easier than what we’ve been through over the last number of years,” Trump said at a White House event.
After withdrawing from the Iranian nuclear deal, Trump has asked all countries to reduce their purchase of oil from Iran to zero or face secondary sanctions. India, being one of the largest importers of Iranian oil, also comes under the purview of American sanctions. To avoid this, India either needs a waiver from the US or has to bring down the purchase of Iranian oil to zero.
Trump said these sanctions will be followed up with even more sanctions to address the full range of Iran’s “malign conduct”.
“We will not allow the world’s leading sponsor of terror to develop the world’s deadliest weapons. Will not happen,” he said.
Moments earlier, Trump signed into law the Hezbollah International Financing Prevention Amendments Act (HIFPAA) of 2018, which imposes additional hard-hitting sanctions on Hezbollah.
“Hezbollah has kidnapped, tortured, and murdered American citizens, including in its brutal attack in 1983 on our Marine Barracks in Beirut, Lebanon, which killed 241 American Marines, Sailors, and Soldiers, wounded 128 other American service members, and killed a Lebanese civilian.
“Another bombing against the French barracks killed 58 French peacekeepers and five Lebanese civilians, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said.
The legislation, Sanders said, will further isolate Hezbollah from the international financial system and reduce its funding.
These sanctions will target foreign persons and government agencies that knowingly assist or support Hezbollah, and Hezbollah-affiliated networks that engage in drug trafficking or other transnational crime, she said.
During a White House event Thursday night to commemorate the 35th anniversary of the attack in Beirut on the Marine Barracks with survivors and family members of the victims, Trump said over the past year, his administration has levied the highest number of sanctions ever imposed on Hezbollah in a single year, by far.