"Terrorism is use of violence and intimidation against civilians in pursuit of political aims. The US is thus engaged in Economic Terrorism. It cannot be called “sanctions”, as they're not designed to enforce laws. They in fact violate law," Zarif tweeted following his speech.
The relationship between the United States and Iran has progressively deteriorated since US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew his country from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), known as Iran nuclear deal, last spring.
Since then, in a succession of restrictive measures, Washington has put almost all major economy sectors of Iran under its sanctions.
Last week, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that Iran was ready to hold negotiations with the United States if Washington lifts sanctions and gives up “bullying."
In May, Tehran announced its own decision to partially suspend obligations under the deal and giving the other signatories — France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Russia, China and the European Union — 60 days to save the accord by facilitating oil exports and trade with Iran.
As the deadline expired, Iran said it would begin enriching uranium beyond the 3.67 percent level, set in the JCPOA, warning that it would gradually abandon its nuclear commitments every 60 days.
The UK is reportedly planning to target Tehran with sanctions after the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) seized a UK-flagged oil tanker, allegedly for breaking international law.