Araqchi: US court ruling is in sharp contrast with intl. law

Vienna, April 22, IRNA – Head of Iran’s Foreign Ministry Headquarters to Monitor Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) Abbas Araqchi says the US Supreme Court’s ruling is a U-turn to the international law.

Araqchi made the remark in an interview with IRNA on the US Supreme Court ruling to withdraw two billion dollars of Iranian frozen assets.

Araqchi, who is in Vienna to attend talks with the EU on formula for the third Iran-G5+1 joint commission meeting, said, ‘The move is exactly in violation of the international law; in another words, it can be considered as an `international robbery”.

He said, ‘The cash belongs to the Central Bank of Iran and it is subject to international immunity. We do not officially recognize the US court’s decision because it has confiscated and in fact robbed Iranian assets in a completely unjudicial method and in violation of the international law.’

He said Iranian foreign ministry has condemned the move and it will definitely follow up restoration of Iranian nation’s rights. ‘We consider the US administration accountable to compensate for the damage.’

He noted, ‘It is related to the money deposited in 2003. Since 2008, it has been subject to judicial and court issues; up to so far, the Central Bank has made appeals for several times and eventually it resulted in completion– of course, from the American party’s point of view — of the judicial procedures and confiscation of the assets.’

Also referring to measures taken by the CBI for several years, Araqchi said, ‘The move is totally condemned; at any rate, it has nothing to do with the JCPOA and it is not caused by the JCPOA related issues.’

The official said the JCPOA is not the sign of having regular or close ties with the US; ‘Neither it means settlement of our problems with the US. In nuclear domain we have well managed our problems but the US hostility in other domains is still there and our problems still persist. They (Americans) will definitely continue with their hostility.’

Araqchi said, ‘I ask those, who assess the subject and oppose the move, not to expect the JCPOA result in Iran’s friendship with the US. Having a look to the Iran-US relations in the past several years, they will come to know that the move falls within framework of the US hostilities and absolutely it has nothing to do with the JCPOA, which was reached between Iran and the G5+1. We (foreign ministry) also will follow up the case within framework of the major issues dealing with the US.’

Asked to comment on the claim of the US Secretary of State John Kerry that Iran had accessed only three billion dollars of its assets, Araqchi said, ‘That to what extent of our assets we have access after the JCPOA; and that, which portion of it we could transfer or use or which portion of it we could convert to other currencies, are the issues naturally best known by the CBI and it can report them.

However, he added that Americans’ record and the hues and cries they launch through figures, lead one to the decision of not trusting any of their claims.

He said, ‘We should have neither trusted the US claims of Iran’s assets abroad being at a very high level nor the ones now it can have access.’

‘Absolutely, according to the JCPOA, all Iran’s assets abroad, whose owners are Ministry of Petroleum, government and the Central Bank of Iran, are no longer restricted,’ concluded Araqchi