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  • Archival photo of Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (R) shaking hands with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, China, during a regional tour by the Iranian FM, in 2019.

    Archival photo of Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (R) shaking hands with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, China, during a regional tour by the Iranian FM, in 2019. | Photo: EFE/EPA

Published 26 November 2020
Opinion

China warns the US about the new sanctions against Iran, which affect certain Chinese and Russian companies that cooperate with Iran.

The U.S. State Department's special representative for Iran, Elliott Abrams, on Wednesday announced sanctions against four Chinese and Russian entities for carrying out activities, which, according to the diplomat, "promote" Iran's missile program. According to the British news agency Reuters, Abrams warned that Washington would continue to exert pressure on the Islamic Republic through coercive measures during the coming weeks and until December or January.

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According to a State Department document in the U.S. Federal Register, released by Bloomberg, the Chinese and Russian companies recently sanctioned are Chengdu Best New Materials Co. and Zibo Elim Trade Company Ltd., based in China; and Nilco Group, Elecon, and Aviazapchast, based in Russia.

Besides, Abrams has recently stated, in a Beirut Institute virtual event, that the U.S. Treasury Department plans to announce, in the coming weeks, additional sanctions against Iran related to weapons, weapons of mass destruction, and human rights violations.

In reaction, the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman, Zhao Lijian, expressed Beijing's resounding rejection of "unilateral" U.S. sanctions against other countries on Thursday. He called on the U.S. to "correct its mistakes."

"In this regard, China gave a serious warning to the U.S., indicating that we are against the application of unilateral sanctions and extraterritorial jurisdiction against other countries and we urge it to correct its mistakes and cancel these illegitimate sanctions," Zhao said in a press conference held in Beijing, the Chinese capital.

A Chinese media outlet points out that the U.S. has insisted on going against the rest of the world's countries to re-impose unilateral sanctions on Iran.

According to the diplomat, China will remain "strictly" committed to nonproliferation principles, but at the same time, "will defend its rights and legitimate interests."

Iran, which emphasizes Russia and China's role in the face of U.S. sabotage in the international sphere, assures that it will never negotiate its missile defense program or its "legitimate" national and regional interests, despite U.S. sanctions.

China is one of the countries that has labeled the U.S. punitive measures as illegal while stating that it will continue to cooperate with Iran. Beijing has pointed out time and again that these unilateral sanctions have no legal, political, or practical effect and that they only "violate international law."

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