Germany warns US Iran sanctions could cause Middle East 'chaos'

North Korea slams UN chief over call for nuclear disarming

Following its withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal earlier this year, on Tuesday the U.S. slapped Iran with "the most biting sanctions ever".

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani - who insists that its nuclear programme is entirely peaceful - has accused Mr Trump of waging "psychological warfare", and ruled out face-to-face talks with him while the sanctions remain in place.

The leaders of United States allies Britain, France and Germany are also pushing back against USA sanctions by pledging their commitment to the deal and protecting companies from U.S. penalties for doing business with Iran.

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif met with his North Korean counterpart Ri Yong Ho on Tuesday (Aug 7), on the same day the U.S. reimposed nuclear-related sanctions on the Islamic republic. Companies doing business with Iran will be barred from the United States, President Donald Trump said on Tuesday.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told the visiting North Korean foreign minister the USA can not be trusted.

He doubled down on that sentiment Wednesday saying that before USA sanctions "nobody supported Iran".

The general overseeing United States military operations in the Middle East said Wednesday that an Iranian naval exercise around the Strait of Hormuz was meant to send a message to Washington before it reimposed sanctions on Tehran.

Trump has said he is ready to hold talks with Iranian leaders, without preconditions but meanwhile, his administration has vowed to press on with its pressure campaign.

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'We stand together to stop Iran's malign activities'.

"Our policy is based on a clear-eyed assessment of the Iranian dictatorship, its sponsorship of terrorism, and its continuing aggression in the Middle East and all around the world", the president said.

The nuclear deal was important "not only to the region's security but the world's security", he told the BBC.

Despite the political will to hold firm, many large European firms such as German automaker Daimler are leaving Iran for fear of U.S. penalties. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall.

Already facing broad economic fallout as their currency implodes, Iranians are wondering how the next phase of the crisis in U.S. relations will play out - and what, exactly, America's long-term strategy is toward their country.

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The new rules mean foreign exchange bureaus will reopen after an attempt to fix the value of the rial in April backfired spectacularly, with corrupt traders making a fortune out of a mushrooming black market. "But I would just suggest we have capabilities as well".

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