In the latest move against the regime in Tehran, the US put sanctions on Iran’s petrochemical industry on Friday. The sanctions target Persian Gulf Petrochemical Industries Company(PGPIC) and 39 of its subsidiaries, over its financial support for Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.
PGPIC and its subsidiaries hold 40 percent of Iran’s petrochemical production capacity and are responsible for 50 percent of Iran’s petrochemical exports. US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said, “By targeting this network we intend to deny funding to key elements of Iran’s petrochemical sector that provide support to the IRGC.”
On Monday, Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif tweeted out a video of an Iranian mother saying she could not get new prosthetic legs for her growing boy due to US sanctions. Zarif said in the tweet, “This is @realdonaldtrump’s “economic war”. And war and talks – with or without preconditions – don’t go together.”
Zarif was responding to Mike Pompeo’s comments from Sunday, saying the US was ready to talk to Iran with no “preconditions.” It does not appear that more US sanctions will bring the Iranians to the negotiating table, but it seems like this is the strategy the Trump Administration will continue to pursue.
Dave DeCamp is a freelance journalist based in Brooklyn NY, focusing on US Foreign policy and wars. He is on Twitter at @decampdave.