Donald Trump says he’s ‘asking for world peace, nothing less’ as he warns against trade with Iran

President Donald Trump has issued a  stern warning to trading partners thinking of doing business with Iran after the reimposition of sanctions, saying they would risk their relationship with the US.

"Anyone doing business with Iran will NOT be doing business with the United States," Mr Trump said in an early morning tweet. "I am asking for WORLD PEACE, nothing less!"

The first set of US “snap back” sanctions against Iran that had been eased under the landmark 2015 nuclear accord went back into effect early Tuesday under an executive order signed by the president.

They will target financial transactions that involve US dollars, Iran’s automotive sector, carpets, food, and metals including gold.

The stiff economic sanctions ratchet up pressure on the Islamic Republic despite deep dismay from Europe, which had promised to make up for the sanctions if Tehran held to the deal.

Iran nuclear deal | The sanctions explained

Mr Trump’s latest comments show deepening divisions between the US and its traditional allies, including Britain, which say the accord is "crucial for the security of Europe, the region and the entire world."

European Union ministers said that Iran was upholding its end of the accord and said it was "crucial for the security of Europe, the region and the entire world".

The EU, which has several signatories in the deal, said it would provide protection for European businesses operating in Tehran.

President Hassan Rouhani addresses the nation in a televised speech in TehranCredit:

Alistair Burt, the British minister of state for the Middle East, reassured UK companies yesterday they would be shielded by a new EU law that aims to mitigate what officials say is the US’s unlawful reach beyond its borders.

However a number of European companies, including French oil company Total and Danish tanker operator Maersk, have already halted business with Tehran after failing to secure a waiver from the US sanctions.

Other companies have expressed doubt the EU’s "blocking mechanism" would work in practice.

Profile | Hassan Rouhani

Gavin Williamson, the Defence Secretary, was asked about the nuclear deal during a question and answer sessions after a speech in Washington on Tuesday. 

He called on America and all nations to “get round the table” and start discussions, adding that the US should start “start talking to its partners” on how to deal with Iran. 

In a statement on Monday just hours before the sanctions went back into effect, Mr Trump said: "The Iranian regime faces a choice.

"Either change its threatening, destabilising behaviour and reintegrate with the global economy, or continue down a path of economic isolation.

"I remain open to reaching a more comprehensive deal that addresses the full range of the regime’s malign activities, including its ballistic missile programme and its support for terrorism."

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani saying that "negotiations with sanctions doesn’t make sense."

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"If you’re an enemy and you stab the other person with a knife, and then you say you want negotiations, then the first thing you have to do is remove the knife," he told state television.

"They want to launch psychological warfare against the Iranian nation," he said.

Protesters have been out on the streets of Iran for months, calling for a solution to the country’s economic crisis and calling for the fall of the establishment.

In response to the plummeting value of the rial, the Central Bank of Iran announced measures to allocate subsidised hard currency, including US dollars and euros, for trading in basic commodities and pharmaceuticals, and to allow unlimited inflows of such currencies, as well as gold, without taxation.  

Iran nuclear deal | Key details

Some experts said they believed domestic pressure could soon force Mr Rouhani back to the negotiating table.

However, others believed Mr Rouhani would not make deals with the US under crippling sanctions.

Mohammad Marandi, a professor at the University of Tehran, told the BBC: "It’s a war, the US is engaging in war, but it’s directed at ordinary Iranians, the hope by the Americans is to make life so miserable for Iranians that they will force the Government to capitulate to the US, that is what the Americans are seeking."

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