On Saturday, Pompeo stated that UN sanctions against Iran were being reinstated after the US triggered a 30-day snapback mechanism. Following the announcement, the EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said that Washington cannot unilaterally restore international sanctions on Tehran.
During an appearance on the Fox News broadcaster, Pompeo accused European countries of failing to put the work in to punish Iran.
“The Europeans have not joined us in this. They know we’re right. They tell us privately we don’t want the arms sales to come back … But they haven’t lifted a finger. They haven’t done the work that needs to be done. They have no option, no alternative to what we’ve done to ensure that doesn’t happen. I hope they’ll join us, I hope they’ll get to the right place,” Pompeo said.
The secretary of state also appeared to criticize European countries for remaining part of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, also known as the Iran nuclear deal, which the US withdrew from in 2018.
“They’re still wedded to this silly nuclear deal that was signed now five years ago. I hope they will come to understand that if you really want to lead, if you want to be part of a global coalition to reduce risk in the Middle East, then you need to join us. We need these sanctions to snap back,” Pompeo stated.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Sunday that Washington has failed in its efforts to reinstate the UN sanctions on Tehran.
A United Nations Security Council arms embargo on Iran is scheduled to expire on October 18. The UK, France, and Germany said in a letter on Saturday that sanctions relief, which was agreed as part of the 2015 deal that limited Iran's nuclear capabilities, would remain in force beyond Sunday.