Iran Takes Its US Gripes to UN's Highest Court

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"The United States is publicly propagating a policy intending to damage as severely as possible Iran's economy and Iranian nationals and companies", Iran's lawyer Mohsen Mohebi told the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

Iran is going to the United Nations' highest court in a bid to have USA sanctions lifted.

Zarif also said the nuclear deal has led to political conflict within Iran.

Trump ordered the sanctions renewed following Washington's withdrawal from the landmark 2015 nuclear accord that curbed Tehran's nuclear ambitions in exchange for lifting crippling sanctions.

The boom that gained momentum following the implementation of JCPOA in 2016 died down after Washington withdrew from the nuclear deal in May, and numerous Western tours to Iran were canceled.

In November, a second batch of potentially more damaging sanctions will be reimposed on Iran's oil and shipping sectors as well as its central bank.

Reuters reported that Iranian lawyers argued to judges with the United Nations-affiliated court that the U.S.is "plainly in violation of the 1955 Treaty of Amity", which was agreed upon as part of an effort to emphasize "friendly relations" and "mutually beneficial trade and investments" between the two nations.

"The proceedings instituted by Iran are a misuse of the court", he contended.

America is waging a psychological war against Iran and its business partners, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Sunday, according to the Tasnim news agency. He said they were needed to ensure Iran never builds a nuclear bomb and to address its continuing missile programme and support for terrorism.

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The oral arguments, essentially a request by Iran for a provisional ruling, will last for four days, with a decision to follow within a month.

However, whether any decision will be implemented remains unclear, with both Iran and the U.S. in the past ignoring ICJ rulings against them. A final decision could take years.

Hearings in that case are due to start on October 8.

Tehran says that the new sanctions are already hurting its economy.

The European Union has tried to keep an global deal on the Iranian nuclear program alive despite Trump's decision in May to withdraw the United States from the agreement.

A raft of global companies - including France's Total, Peugeot and Renault, and Germany's Siemens and Daimler - have suspended operations in Iran in the wake of the move.

In an initial written submission to the court, the United States said it believed The Hague court has no jurisdiction in the case and that Iran's assertions fall outside the bounds of the treaty. The British carrier added however that the decision was unrelated to the fresh sanctions.

The ICJ is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations and settles legal disputes between member states.

Iran ignored a 1980 US suit at the ICJ over the seizure of American diplomats in Tehran, which the court found to be illegal.The ICJ ruled in 2003 that the US-Iran treaty was still valid even though it was signed before the Islamic revolution, but did not deem US actions against Iranian oil platforms nor Iranian attacks on American shipping to have violated the treaty.

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