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Top UN court orders US compensate Iran in case on frozen assets

Top UN court orders US compensate Iran in case on frozen assets
US violated 1955 treaty on friendly economic relations by freezing certain Iranian assets, says Int'l Court of Justice

By Rabia Ali

ISTANBUL (AA) - US sanctions on Iran involving the freezing of certain assets violated a 1955 treaty on friendly economic relations and consular rights between the two countries, the UN's top court ruled on Thursday.

Judge Kirill Gevorgian of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) read out the judgement from the ICJ courtroom in The Hague in the case concerning 'certain Iranian assets,' noting that articles three, four, and 10 of the Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations and Consular Rights had been violated.

Under the judgement, the US is also ordered to pay Iran compensation due to Tehran's demand for "full reparation for the injury caused by those acts." The amount is to be decide later.

However, on the matter on the release of nearly $1.75 billion in Iranian Central Bank funds frozen by the US, the court said this was not in its jurisdiction.

In 2016, Iran took the US to the highest court at the UN to settle the dispute after the US Supreme Court ordered that assets including the $1.75 billon seized from Iranian Central bank should be given to victims of terrorist attacks.

The US Supreme Court had ruled that compensation be paid to victims of terror attacks which Tehran is blamed for, including the 1983 bombing of a US base in Lebanon, resulting in deaths of 241 American troops. Iran rejects claims that it was involved.

Tehran claims that the US illegally allowed its court to freeze assets of Iranian companies, including its state bank, and argues that the asset freeze is a violation of US' obligations of the 1955 friendship treaty between the two nations. In 2018, the US formally withdrew from the treaty.

The ICJ started hearing the case in 2019, with public hearings from both parties concluded in September last year. Iran in its final arguments alleged that the US failed to recognize the separate juridical status of its Central Bank, and was guilty of unreasonable and discriminatory treatment of such companies and their property.

It demanded Washington pay full reparations "for the injury caused by those acts" and offer a formal apology for those "wrongful acts and injuries." In its final submission, the US requested the court "dismiss all claims brought under the Treaty of Amity on the basis that Iran comes to the Court with unclean hands."

source: News Feed
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