Seoul granted waiver to buy Iranian oil

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On Monday, the USA introduced another package of sanctions against Iran, which affect key sectors of the economy.

The move is part of a wider effort by U.S. President Donald Trump to curb Iran's missile and nuclear programmes and diminish its influence in the Middle East. "It can either do a 180 degree turn from its outlaw course of action and act like a normal country, or it can see its economy crumble", Pompeo said.

"This is an economic war against Iran but".

The 2015 Iranian nuclear deal rolled back sanctions against Tehran in exchange for a reduction in the country's nuclear abilities.

"Treasury's imposition of unprecedented financial pressure on Iran should make clear to the Iranian regime that they will face mounting financial isolation and economic stagnation until they fundamentally change their destabilizing behavior", Steven Mnuchin, the Treasury Secretary, said in a statement Monday, the day the sanctions kicked in.

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A surprise omission was Iraq, which was not granted a waiver because Iran could have bypassed sanctions by mixing its oil with its neighbour's output.

Trump on August 6 signed an executive order re-imposing many sanctions on Iran, three months after pulling out of the Iran nuclear deal. It exported nearly three million barrels of crude oil per day on an average. "We will continue talking to the rest to bring oil imports to zero", Pompeo said. South Korea said on Monday it had been granted a waiver to continue at least temporarily importing condensate from Iran and running financial transactions with the Middle Eastern country.

"These were billed as the strongest sanctions in history meant to prevent Iran from exporting any oil at all, but the reality hasn't quite lived up to its hype", RT producer Sayeh Tavangar says.

"Any financial institution, company, or individual who evades our sanctions risks losing access to the U.S. financial system and the ability to do business with the United States or USA companies", Mnuchin said.

This could mean European and other banks and businesses face secondary sanctions if Washington deems them in breach of sanctions, and United States officials have been pressing SWIFT to act.

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Meanwhile, the expert was not optimistic about the possibility that Iran would negotiate another deal with the United States. "The market was previously overly focused on the number of countries receiving exemptions on imports from Iran".

"China opposes unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction", AFP quoted foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying as saying at a regular briefing with reporters on Monday.

Iran's Foreign Minister, Javad Zarif, blustered that the sanctions would only isolate the United States, tweeting, "Today, US defied UN top court & Security Council by reimposing sanctions on Iran that target ordinary people".

Iran's exports peaked at 2.8 million barrels per day (bpd) in April, including 300,000 bpd of condensate, a lighter form of oil.

Monday's sanctions target more than 700 entities in Iran, focusing on the energy and finance sectors of the oil-producing regime. The other parties to the deal - Britain, France, Germany, China and Russian Federation - say they will not leave.

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