The United Nations’ highest court rules that it can hear a case brought by Iran against the United States in a bid to end sanctions the Trump administration re-imposed in 2018 after pulling out of an international deal aimed at curtailing Tehran’s nuclear program.
Lawyers for the United States argued at hearings last year that the case should be thrown out by the International Court of Justice for lack of jurisdiction and admissibility.
However, the court’s president, Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf, says that judges rejected US arguments.
Iran filed the case in July 2018 a few months after then-US president Donald Trump said he was pulling the US out of a 2015 international agreement over Iran’s nuclear program and would re-impose sanctions on Tehran. Washington also threatened other countries with sanctions if they don’t cut off Iranian oil imports by early November.
In its case, Iran alleges that the sanctions breach a 1955 bilateral agreement known as the Treaty of Amity that regulates and promotes economic and consular ties between the two countries.
The ruling Wednesday comes as new US President Joe Biden is seeking to enhance diplomacy toward Iran while Washington looks at restoring constraints on the country’s nuclear program and reining in its regional ambitions.