In an op-ed published in The Algemeiner on Thursday, The Israel Project CEO and President, Josh Block, slammed the European Union for sabotaging “bipartisan US efforts to hold Iran accountable for its illicit nuclear and non-nuclear activities.”
Block noted that “in the struggle for fundamental freedom, one would expect the European Union — an institution founded on the principles of liberty and democracy — to stand in solidarity with the Iranian people against their oppressors.” Instead, Block said, “Europe has so far sent the opposite message.”
Britain, France, and Germany announced at the end of January the launch of the so-called Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), a central part of European attempts to salvage the 2015 nuclear accord with the Islamic Republic.
The SPV acts as a financial and commercial intermediary for exports and imports between Iran and the EU and will be open to other countries that are trading with Iran. It will use Euros or sterling, rather than U.S. dollars, to minimize the exposure of participating businesses to U.S. sanctions.
“Lured by lucrative trade deals with Iran, policymakers across Europe’s capitals have turned a blind eye to the suffering of peaceful Iranians who are lingering in prison or have ended up in unmarked graves,” Block asserted.
German President Frank Walter-Steinmeier came under fire this week for sending Iran a congratulatory telegram on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the Islamic Republic’s founding.
“There’s nothing to celebrate about a regime that has plunged an entire country into darkness,” Block countered. “Forty years later, the Iranian people are still fighting the same tyrants that deny them basic human rights. The claim of moderation is nothing but an illusion for this medieval regime.”
He also noted that “Iran’s behavior just keeps getting worse.” As evidence, he cited “Tehran’s assassinations of political opponents on foreign soil, terror plots in Europe, the fighters and ammunitions it sent to Syria, or inference in Yemen’s brutal civil war.”
It is precisely the fact that Iran has been the leading state supporter of terrorism for decades that underlines why the Islamic Republic “directly threatens US security interests and the security of regional allies.” Israel and the Arab world, Block noted, “readily acknowledge” this fact.
“It is truly shameful that European states continue to evade US sanctions as the regime in Tehran continues its march toward nuclear weapons, threatens its neighbors, denies the Holocaust, and suffocates its people,” Block concluded. “It is now up to America to say, ‘no more,’ and for Europe to stop shielding a murderous regime.”
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