With new US sanctions approved, Iran taking ‘wait & see attitude’ to future Trump administration

With new US sanctions approved, Iran taking ‘wait & see attitude’ to future Trump administration
As the Obama administration applies a series of tough new sanctions against Iran, contravening prior agreements, Iranians have no choice but to hope for the best from Donald Trump, Professor Seyed Mohammad Marandi from the University of Tehran told RT.

The US Senate has voted unanimously to renew sanctions against Iran for another decade.

It's been described as a symbolic move, but it allows the president to impose new restrictions on Tehran if it violates the 2015 nuclear accord.

The vote was 99 to 0 and follows a similar ballot in the House of Representatives last month when only one person voted against the extension of the Iran Sanctions Act.

RT: Washington says the vote is only symbolic and won't change anything.... but it gives President-elect Donald Trump an opportunity to break the nuclear accord if he wishes. What are the implications of that?

Mohammad Marandi: The most important thing right now for Tehran is that we have not even entered the Trump era. Obama, who was supposed to implement the agreement between Iran and the “P5+1” has not abided by his side of the bargain. In the past, we saw visa restrictions that were implemented and signed by Obama after the agreement which was a violation. The US confiscated Iranian money. The US put pressure on banks, as well as other financial institutions, insurance companies, shipping companies not to work with Iran. That was a violation of the agreement. And this particular law is a violation, and we see that Obama has not put pressure on the Democrats to vote against it because not a single person stood up against the law. This is a new law because the old law was to run out, it would run out very shortly, and now a new law is being passed. That is in direct violation. The law is both adding sanctions, and it is against third parties, in other third world countries, who want to do business with Iran. All of these are violations of the agreement. So, this is Obama who is actually breaking the agreement.

RT: Trump has called the deal "the stupidest of all time" and Tehran, the world's largest sponsor of terrorism. Should we expect even harsher rhetoric from the new president?

MM: At the moment the Iranians have decided to wait and see. Because Trump has said many things and he is already backing away from some of the statements that he said before. There are a host of issues that are important for Iran, one is, of course, the “P5+1” agreement with Iran. We have to see where Trump goes on that. Also with regards to ISIS and other extremists, Trump has promised to shift American policy away from supporting terrorism and extremism in this region. We don’t know if he is going to enact on those statements. For the time being the Iranians are looking to the current administration to see what they are doing. Obama has violated the agreement…

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.