Iran's Evin prison, Ansar-e Hezbollah face new United States sanctions

Iran's Evin prison, Ansar-e Hezbollah face new United States sanctions

Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj said New Delhi will not make foreign policy decisions under pressure from others.

In the letter, Iran's Zangeneh "underlined imposition of unlawful, unilateral and extraterritorial sanctions by the United States government on the Islamic Republic of Iran which clearly violate the global agreement that had been endorsed by the UN Security Council", the Iranian oil ministry's news service Shana reported.

The US had also announced tightening sanctions against Venezuela following re-election of President Nicolas Maduro.

Iran's top diplomat is in India as part of worldwide consultations aimed at discussing continued mutual cooperation with world countries now that the USA has quit a multi-lateral nuclear accord with the Islamic Republic.

The United States has warned that Iran should comply with the conditions Secretary of State Mike Pompeo set for it lest it face "crushing sanctions". Swaraj said that the BJP-led NDA government's initiatives have helped rescue around 90,000 Indian citizens overseas.

The US Treasury designated three Iranian entities and six individuals on Wednesday for committing human rights abuses and censorship, in what is the sixth round of sanctions since President Donald Trump left the nuclear deal on May 8.

Swaraj met Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif in New Delhi on Monday just weeks after the US' rejection of the nuclear accord.

The threat of USA sanctions has prompted Russian oil giant Lukoil to put its plans to develop projects in Iran on hold while the Indian company that owns the world's largest oil refining complex plans to stop buying oil from Iran, Reuters reported on May 30. The US is already the largest arms seller to India.

China, Russia and several European nations have been trying to salvage the deal. Prime Minister Modi visited Tehran in May 2016 with an aim to craft a strategic relationship with Iran and expand India's ties with West Asia.

They don't seem to say so publicly in New Delhi, but I suspect India is also afraid that Trump will push Iran solidly into the China camp, creating a Sino-Muslim geopolitical bloc on India's northwest.

Likewise, India would like to tap into the gas and oil of Central Asia (Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan in particular) and even Russian Federation through pipelines down through Iran to the planned Indian-run Chabahar port on Iran's Gulf coast.

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