Iran: Sanctions act extension shows US unreliable

Congressional aides said they expected Obama would sign the 10-year extension into law when it reached his desk

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A US Senate vote to extend the Iran Sanctions Act (ISA) for 10 years shows the world that Washington cannot be relied upon to act on its commitments, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Saturday.

Iran has vowed to retaliate against the ISA extension, passed unanimously on Thursday, saying it violated last year's agreement with six major powers to curb its nuclear programme in return for lifting of international financial sanctions.

"To the world community, the extension of sanctions against Iran shows the unreliability of the American government," state broadcaster IRIB quoted Zarif as saying upon arrival in India for an official visit.

"America is acting against its commitment," Zarif added.

Iran deal

US President Barack Obama is expected to sign US legislation extending sanctions against Iran for 10 years into law, the White House said on Friday.

“We believe the Iran Sanctions Act extension is not necessary, but we also believe it won’t interfere with the Iran deal,” spokesman Eric Schultz told reporters at a daily press briefing. “I would expect the president to sign this piece of legislation.”

The US Senate passed a 10-year extension of existing sanctions against Iran on Thursday. It passed the House of Representatives nearly unanimously in November, and congressional aides said they expected Obama would sign it when it reached his desk.

Iran’s Foreign Ministry said on Friday that the US Senate’s vote violated a historic nuclear deal reached between the country and six major powers in 2015.

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