‘Zero waivers ever’: United States wants India to stop oil imports from Iran

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani addresses a general meeting of the Judiciary in Tehran

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani addresses a general meeting of the Judiciary in Tehran

In the Grand Bazaar, hundreds staged a similar protest, videos posted on social media showed.

According to Reuters, Mohammad Shariatmadari, Iran's Industries and trade minister, slapped the import ban on 1,339 goods from overseas, including home appliances, textile products, footwear, leather products, furniture, and healthcare products. The semiofficial Fars news agency reported that traders gathered at the Grand Bazaar to protest "against recession", exchange-rate fluctuations, declining demand from Iranian consumers, and rising prices.

Pictures also showed shopkeepers were on strike in other cities including Arak, Shiraz, Tabriz and Kermanshah. At the end of previous year, it stood at 42,890, more than double this week's valuation.

Defending his economic record, Rouhani said the government's income had not been affected in recent months, and the fall in the rial was the result of "foreign media propaganda".

"Even in the worst case, I promise that the basic needs of Iranians will be provided", Rouhani claimed.

The State Department official said now is the time for the companies to stop buying Iranian oil.

In a briefing on Tuesday, the US State Department official said that while the administration would not rule out waivers or extensions to the November deadline - which Trump announced when he withdrew from the Iran deal in May - it isn't discussing them either.

The United States on Tuesday insisted its allies, including India, should end all imports of crude oil from Iran by November 4 when sanctions against Iran come into effect again, reported AFP quoting a US State Department official.

The International Monetary Fund estimated in March that the government held $112 billion of foreign assets and reserves, and that Iran was running a current account surplus.

"And the judiciary must confront those who disrupt economic security". These figures suggested Iran might withstand the sanctions without an external payments crisis.

"We must neutralize the plans of the enemy for an economic war and psychological operations".

Prosecutor Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi said the "main provocateurs" who planned the protest and threatened shopkeepers to close their stores were arrested.

Iran's currency, the rial, has lost half its value against the US dollar in less than a year; the government has set an exchange rate of 42,000 rials to $1, but dollars are going for 90,000 rials on the black market. The announcement paved the way for the Trump administration to reimpose aggressive sanctions - including on Iran's energy sector - that had been lifted under the JCPOA.

"Withdrawal was the worst decision he (Trump) could make. It was appalling. It hurt America's global reputation", he added.

Widespread protests also erupted at the end of past year across Iran over the ongoing economic situation. At least 25 people died in the ensuing unrest, the biggest expression of public discontent in nearly a decade.

The protests on Monday also saw rare public anger at the Iranian regime's intervention in foreign conflicts throughout the Middle East. Tehran's backing of Lebanese militia Hezbollah, Syrian President Bashar Assad, the Houthi rebels in Yemen, Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza, and Shi'ite militias in Syria and Iraq is estimated to cost some $1 billion annually.

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