'Behave like a normal country,' Pompeo tells Iran

'Behave like a normal country,' Pompeo tells Iran
The US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made the remarks ahead of Washington reimposing sanctions on Iran on Tuesday.
2 min read
06 August, 2018
Mike Pompeo at a press conference in Mexico City [Getty]

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that sanctions on Tehran will be rigorously enforced and used to ensure that Iran "behaves like a normal country".

Pompeo made the remarks aboard his plane on his way home from a trip to South East Asia, and said sanctions are a core pillar of US policy toward Iran.

He said that the Trump administration is open to considering actions beyond sanctions that "would require enormous change" from Tehran.

He said behaving like a normal country was "the ask. It's pretty simple".

The secretary of state has previously used the same language when discussing Iran.

A first set of US sanctions that had been eased by the Obama administration under the 2015 Iran nuclear deal will take effect again on Tuesday, following Trump's decision in May to withdraw from the accord. 

A second set of US sanctions will be reimposed in early November and target Iran's oil sector and central bank. 

Pompeo also said the US has long designated Iran as the world's foremost state sponsor of terrorism and said it cannot expect to be treated as an equal in the international community. 

Trump poured scorn on the "disastrous" 2015 accord in an address to the nation from the White House in May announcing the withdrawal, describing the agreement as an "embarrassment" to the US that does nothing to contain Iran's nuclear ambitions.

Trump sparked an international outcry at the time in a move that overturned years of US diplomacy.

In late December and early January, protests against Iran's stalled economy took place across the country.

Demonstrations resurfaced in May amid water shortages and a continued tumbling of the Iranian rial over fears of the effects of looming US sanctions on the Iranian economy.

The unofficial rate for the rial fell to a record low of 119,000 to the US dollar last week, compared to an official rate of 42,000. 

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