AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Iran has filed a lawsuit against the United States alleging that Washington’s decision in May to impose sanctions after pulling out of a nuclear deal violates a 1955 treaty between the two countries, the International Court of Justice said on Tuesday.
A State Department official said the application was without merit and the United States would fight it in the court.
“While we cannot comment on the specifics, Iran’s application is baseless and we intend to vigorously defend the United States before the ICJ,” a State Department official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told Reuters.
According to IFP News Mohsen Mohebbi, the head of Iran’s Presidential Centre for International Legal Affairs, said the ICJ has issued the warning in a letter to US Foreign Secretary Mike Pompeo on Tuesday.
Iran filed a lawsuit against the US alleging that Washington’s decision in May to impose sanctions after pulling out of the 2015 nuclear deal violates a 1955 treaty between the two countries, the ICJ said on July 17.
Iran said in its filing that Trump’s move “has violated and continued to violate multiple provisions” of the Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations and Consular Rights.
The ICJ letter asks the US not to make moves that may prevent the upcoming decision of the tribunal on the case from taking effect, he said.
Mohebbi said Iran’s lawsuit asked the ICJ to order the US not to re-impose sanctions before more detailed arguments.
The first hearing session in the case will be held on August 27, the ICJ letter said.
The ICJ, which is based in The Hague and is also known as the World Court, is the United Nations tribunal for resolving international disputes.
Although the ICJ’s decisions are binding, it has no power to enforce them, and countries, including the United States, have occasionally ignored them.