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Iranian naval drill a warning on sanctions, says United States general

10 August 2018

"Iran's cyber activities against the world have been the most consequential, costly and aggressive in the history of the Internet, more so than Russian Federation".

Trump has said he is ready to hold talks with Iranian leaders, without preconditions but meanwhile, his administration has vowed to press on with its pressure campaign.

On Monday, Rouhani said Iran was ready to enter talks with the US if Washington compensated the country for past damages.

AJC Executive Director David Harris also commented on Trump's action, saying, "We support the USA decision".

He doubled down on that sentiment Wednesday saying that before USA sanctions "nobody supported Iran".

North Korean foreign minister, Ri Yong Ho, visited Iran as the United States reintroduced sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

"They can't think that Iran won't export oil and others will export", he said.

The United States is closely monitoring Iranian naval activity to ensure no disruptions occur to global shipping, a top US general said Wednesday, as tensions with Tehran intensify over renewed economic pressure from the Trump administration.

Tuesday's sanctions target Iran's purchases of USA dollars, metals trading, coal, industrial software and the auto sector.

United States revives sanctions to hurt Iran economy
Instead, Iran could send missiles to its Houthi allies in Yemen to target oil shipping from U.S. allies, as it already has . While Iran's economy is in poor shape, it isn't in the critical condition it was when the Iran nuclear deal was reached.

Khonsari believes Iran "has the moral high ground" since it was the United States that broke the 2015 nuclear agreement (JCPOA) with the five permanent security council members and Germany. "Beyond its nuclear program, the Islamic Republic of Iran has been expanding its support for terrorism in the region and globally, undermining and destabilizing governments in the region, and issuing military threats, including against the very existence of the State of Israel".

European countries, hoping to persuade Tehran to continue to respect the deal, have promised to try to lessen the blow of sanctions and to urge their firms not to pull out.

Despite threats voiced by Washington, a number of countries have refused to bow to Trump's demands to cut ties with Iran. A second batch of United States sanctions will be re-imposed on Iran in November with the aim of undermining its oil exports and shipping sectors.

Ri arrived in Tehran after reportedly sparring with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo during a summit of Asian nations in Singapore over the weekend.

USA officials have said in recent weeks that they aim to pressure countries to stop buying oil from Iran in a bid to force Tehran to halt its nuclear and missile programs and involvement in regional conflicts in Syria and Iraq. They had also proposed setting up accounts for the Central Bank of Iran in their national banks, he added.

Iran's markets were actually relatively buoyant, with the rial strengthening by 20 percent since Sunday after the government relaxed foreign exchange rules and allowed unlimited, tax-free gold and currency imports.

About a third of all oil traded by sea passes through the Strait of Hormuz. The defiance comes as tension with America already increasing due to a trade war that Washington started.

The EU's response to Donald Trump's sanctions on Iran is unravelling after European businesses defied their calls to maintain investment in the country.

Iranian naval drill a warning on sanctions, says United States general