European governments have so far not been able to persuade Trump to ensure the import of basic food and medicines in Iran after the advent of neighboring sanctions next week, according to diplomats known before the talks.
Nuclear, shipping and banking sanctions imposed after Iran's nuclear program to severely reduce its nuclear program in 2015, six months after Donald Trump left nuclear business, and more than 700 new banks, companies, existing blacklists added individuals and ships.
Humanitarian aid is formally exempt from sanctions, but in the past, foreign banks and companies, which are in conflict with the risk, are avoiding all transactions with Iran, fearing that they have been punished, leading to a serious shortage of life-saving medicines and food-related bottlenecks before the 2015 agreement years.
"There is no doubt that the life of thousands of people is in danger" Ahmad Ghavideh from Iranian hemophilia society phoneed the Guardian from Tehran.
"Any delays in medical care, especially in the sector I work, will have catastrophic consequences," said the head of the NGO. "There is concern today, but six months after the supply is out of stock. They claim that the import of medicines is free of sanctions, but in practice, due to bank restrictions, we do not have access to medicine or to the ingredients that are needed to be internally do them. "
The United States, the French and German ambassadors to the United States – the three countries signed the 2014 nuclear agreement – jointly visited the Treasury and the state organs in September in order to persuade the administration to produce a "white list. " This would provide clear guidelines on the channels of European banks and corporations pursuing legal transactions with Iran without fear of future punishments.
"We expect our American friends to make gestures on humanitarian goods," said Gerard Araud, French Ambassador in Washington this week. "Of course, humanitarian goods are not sanctioned, but the fact that banks are so frightened of the sanctions that they do not want anything with Iran means that in a few months there is a risk that Iran will have a deficiency if we do not something positive. "
Araud said that it is not enough to exempt humanitarian goods from the list of sanctions. "You really need to be more positive and have to say how to do it." If you do not tell me how to do it then the banks will not do it. "So we expect a technical answer," said the ambassador at Hudson Institute think tank.
Araud asked about the administration's response: "As far as humanitarian issues are concerned, we did not really get answers."
"The whole idea of the white list is chewed by the administration," another European diplomat said.
On Friday, Iran's secretary-general, Special Envoy Brian Hook, who met with European ambassadors in September, seemed to rule out special provisions for humanitarian goods beyond their formal exemption from sanctions.
"The burden is not in the United States to identify safe channels," Hook told reporters. "We have been doing to allow the sale of humanitarian goods to Iran, which is our part." This is our role, Iran has a role to play in making these deals. "Banks do not trust Iran's banking system … This is Iran's problem; not our problem. "
Three of the three parties known as the Joint Comprehensive Action Plan (JCPOA) of the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran strongly oppose the Trump administration's decision to violate its administration and strive to insulate the European companies that engage in business with Iran on US sanctions is a "special purpose vehicle" that will provide a channel for euro trading.
EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini has issued a joint statement on Friday with British, French and German Foreign Ministers, saying that he "deeply regrets" the restoration of American sanctions and will continue to pursue legitimate trade.
"Our collective solution is to finish this job," he added.
Informing journalists about future sanctions, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he did not think European efforts would work to avoid US sanctions.
"I did not expect that there would be a need for transactions that are significant for a special purpose vehicle I've seen," said Mnuchin. "But if there is a transaction aimed at avoiding sanctions, we will continue aggressively with our remedies."
European diplomats claim that humanitarian aid is being discussed within the administration, some public officials warn that the United States is endangering the responsibility for civilian deaths in Iran if they do not do more to guarantee medicines and basic needs .
They said that the most difficult line came from the White House, which greatly appreciated the pressure on Iran. On Friday, Trump tweeted a photo in the style of the advent of the TV series "Fantasy", with the slogan "Sanctions are coming, November 5".
Although the administration does not formally engage in a change of regime in Iran, a European diplomat said that ultimately the goal of the National Security Adviser, John Bolton.
"Bolton thinks the system crashes," said the diplomat. "So the discussion we are trying to formulate with this administration is what happens afterwards and has never led anyone to that."
Trump revealed the possibility of holding a secret meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at the UN General Assembly in 2017 but Rouhani refused the proposal. The US president is no longer interested in the negotiations because he believes that economic isolation will force Tehran to concessions without the need for negotiations.
"First [US officials] it is too early and the Iranians have to suffer, "said the European diplomat on the policy of administration." They should feel the full weight of sanctions and see. "
Ellie Geranmayeh, senior politician at the European Council of External Relations, said: "The administration told Europeans: we will not be able to reassure the European companies in this front.
"I have spoken to a number of European pharmaceutical companies and say that their banks have indicated that they are struggling to handle Iran's payments," added Geranmayeh. "This is incompatible with the declared policy of Trump's administration that sanctions do not oppose the Iranian people."