This case could lead to renewed tensions between the two countries, which have not maintained diplomatic relations since 1980.
The International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled Wednesday, February 13, the request of Iran to recover nearly $ 2 billion of assets frozen in the United States. They want these funds to go to the victims of attacks attributed to Tehran.
The judges refused the US request for a rejection of the Iranian application. Washington argued that Iran had the " dirty hands " in view of its alleged links to terrorism and that the ICJ was not competent in this case. But the Court, sitting in The Hague, rejected the US appeals and said it had full jurisdiction to rule on the case, which could lead to renewed tensions between the two countries, which more diplomatic relations since 1980.
"The Court unanimously rejects the first preliminary objection of lack of jurisdiction raised by the United States of America"said Judge President Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf after reading the judgment. In future plenary hearings, the date of which has not yet been set, the ICJ will consider whether Tehran can actually recover its $ 2 billion frozen in the United States.
The Islamic Republic had initiated this procedure against the United States before the ICJ in June 2016 to obtain the release of its funds, which the US Supreme Court authorized the seizure in April 2016. In all, nearly 2 billion dollars from Iranian funds frozen in New York and corresponding to bonds in which the Central Bank of Iran had invested.
Courts in the United States had decided that these sums had to be blocked to compensate American victims of terrorist attacks, an approach deemed illegal by Iran. The sums were claimed by a thousand victims and families of victims of attacks fomented or supported by Tehran, according to US justice. Among them are relatives of the 241 American soldiers killed on 23 October 1983 in two suicide bombings that had hit the US and French contingents of the multinational security force in Beirut.
But in its complaint to the ICJ, Tehran argues that Washington has violated a 1955 bilateral treaty signed by the Shah of Iran with the US government on economic relations and consular rights.
"Destabilizing Influence" of Iran
Monday, Iran promised failure plans "Demonic of his enemies", mainly the United States and Israel, on the occasion of the 40e anniversary of the victory of the Islamic revolution. The United States and Israel, for their part, had put pressure on Iran at a conference on the Middle East held from Wednesday in Warsaw. The conference, which brings together some sixty countries in the Polish capital, is led by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and US Vice President Mike Pence.
This initiative was initially to focus on "The destabilizing influence" from Iran to the Middle East, a proposal that was later broadened in response to the lack of enthusiasm of the international community.
The decisions of the ICJ, the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, are binding and can not be appealed. However, the Court has no way of enforcing them.