Turkey and the United States have been at odds on several fronts including Ankara’s decision to buy the S-400s, which cannot be integrated into NATO systems. Washington says it would jeopardise Turkey’s role in building Lockheed Martin F-35 fighter jets, which it says would be compromised by S-400s.
The U.S. said Thursday that it has seized a North Korean cargo ship that was used to violate international sanctions, a first-of-its kind enforcement action that comes amid a tense moment in relations between the two countries.
The "Wise Honest," North Korea's second largest cargo ship, was detained in April 2018 as it traveled toward Indonesia. It's now in the process of being moved to American Samoa, Justice Department officials said.
Officials made the announcement hours after North Korea fired two suspected short-range missiles toward the sea, the second weapons launch in five days and a possible signal that stalled talks over its nuclear weapons program are in trouble. The public disclosure that the vessel is now in U.S. custody may further inflame tensions, though U.S. officials said the timing of their complaint was not a response to the missile launch.
“We do not believe any result can be reached with sanctions. I think meaningful dialogue and talks are more useful than sanctions. Not only neighboring countries but many countries from many regions of the world are being impacted by these unilateral sanctions,” Turkey foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said.
Barbara Slavin, an Iran expert at the Washington-based Atlantic Council said: “This is not 2012 when the world was united behind sanctions against Iran. The US has had some success in terms of frightening away major corporations. The sanctions hurt a lot. But Iran is still going to be able to sell oil.”
In a victory for Tehran against Washington, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) has ordered the United States to halt the unilateral sanctions it recently re-imposed on “humanitarian” supplies to Iran. The Hague-based court, which is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, announced its ruling on Wednesday regarding the July lawsuit brought by Tehran against Washington’s decision to re-impose unilateral sanctions following the US exit from the the 2015 nuclear deal.