Iran appeals UN's top court against US block on frozen funds
Iran has appealed to the UN's top court against a US Supreme Court ruling that USD 2 billion in frozen Iranian assets must be paid to American victims of terror attacks.
The Hague: Iran has appealed to the UN's top court against a US Supreme Court ruling that USD 2 billion in frozen Iranian assets must be paid to American victims of terror attacks blamed on Tehran, the tribunal said Wednesday.
In its filing to the International Court of Justice based in The Hague yesterday, Tehran argues that "Iran and Iranian state-owned companies are entitled to immunity from the jurisdiction of the US courts", the tribunal said in a statement.
The US Supreme Court ruled in April that Iran must hand over nearly USD 2 billion in frozen assets to survivors and relatives of those killed in attacks blamed on the Islamic republic.
These included the 1983 bombing of a US Marine barracks in Beirut and the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia.
The decision affects more than 1,000 Americans.
But Tehran, which signed a landmark nuclear deal last year with world powers leading to the unblocking of other frozen funds, has reacted angrily to the Supreme Court ruling.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani announced late Wednesday that "Iran has officially lodged a complaint with the international court and we will pursue our case until we get a result."
"The American courts have illegally decided that these funds must be given to Americans and the families of victims killed in Lebanon," he said, quoted by Iranian media.
"It remains unclear what these Americans were doing in Lebanon, and how this affair concerns Iran."
In the filing to the ICJ, Iran argues that the legal proceedings underway in the US breach the terms of a 1955 bilateral treaty of amity, economic relations, and consular rights signed with the United States.
It further calls for the United States "to make full reparations to Iran for the violation of its international legal obligations in an amount to be determined by the Court at a subsequent stage of the proceedings."