Iranian judges have said they plan to set up a special court to prosecute American officials over Washington, D.C.’s sanctions campaign against Tehran, in what amounts to a symbolic move showing Iranian fury over what the regime has termed “economic terrorism.”
Iranian deputy judiciary chief Ali Baqeri told Iranian media Monday that the judiciary will set up a new branch to prosecute supporters of U.S sanctions, the Fars News Agency reported.
Baqeri’s proposal was welcomed by judiciary chief Seyed Ebrahim Rayeesi, who said the U.S. decision to impose further sanctions “makes us more determined to remain committed to our positions and measures against the hegemonic system.”
Baqeri described the latest round of sanctions as a crime against humanity and said the U.S. administration had a “madness for crime” against Iran. Baqeri said the cases could be heard by national and local Iranian courts, which means any prosecution would carry no weight internationally and be a purely symbolic measure.
The U.S. announced last week that it would blacklist 18 Iranian banks that had previously escaped some American sanctions. The move will effectively cut Tehran off from the global financial market as President Donald Trump’s administration seeks to cripple the regime ahead of November’s presidential election.
Iranian officials reacted furiously, warning that the measures would prevent the country from accessing much needed humanitarian and medical supplies. The U.S. has repeatedly stressed that the sanctions have loopholes for humanitarian and medical aid. But Tehran says sanctioning banks indirectly limits aid due to the targeted institutions’ role in facilitating imports.