Iranian diplomats and their families living in New York face US travel curbs


The United States has tightly restricted the travel of more than a dozen Iranian diplomats and their families living in New York, according to a US diplomatic note to sent to the Iran Mission to the United Nations and seen by Reuters on Tuesday.

The diplomats are subjected to the same rules imposed by the United States on Irans Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, who arrived on Sunday amid heightened tensions between the two countries.

They may only travel between the United Nations, the Iranian UN mission, the Iranian UN ambassadors residence, and John F. Kennedy airport. There is also a carve-out for the six blocks surrounding Queensboro Plaza in Long Island City in the borough of Queens. It was not immediately clear why.

Longtime US-Iran strains have worsened since US President Donald Trump last year quit a 2015 international agreement to curb Irans nuclear program in return for sanctions relief. Trump has imposed more sanctions on Iran.

Washington and Tehran sent mixed signals on Tuesday about resolving their disputes as Irans supreme leader threatened to further breach the nuclear deal while Trump cited “a lot of progress.”

The July 12 diplomatic note said the travel rules, which are open-ended, apply to “all members of the permanent mission of Iran to the United Nations, their immediate family members, and representatives of the Iranian government to the United Nations.”

It said a waiver would be required from US State Department Office of Foreign Missions for any other travel and requests must be made at least five days in advance. The Iranian UN mission is also required to submit residential and hotel accommodations for approval.

The Iranian UN mission did not immediately respond to a request for comment. A spokesman for Irans foreign ministry said on Monday Zarifs work in New York was unaffected.

The United Nations said on Monday that it told the United States it was concerned by the new tight travel restrictions. A US State Department official said the United States had acted “in a manner that is fully consistent” with its obligations under a 1947 agreement with the United Nations.

Before the new rules, Iranian diplomats – like envoys of North Korea, Syria, and Cuba – were already confined to a radius of 25 miles froRead More – Source

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