Ebrahim Raisi
Ebrahim Raisi Reuters/Majid Asgaripour/WANA

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi on Friday criticized the United States for imposing new sanctions on petrochemical producers in the Islamic Republic, AFP reported.

The comments came a day after the US sanctioned a network of Iranian petrochemical firms, as well as alleged front companies in China and the United Arab Emirates, accusing them of helping Tehran to circumvent sanctions.

"I am surprised (by the behavior) of the Americans," Raisi said on Friday, adding, "On the one hand, they send a message in favor of negotiations and agreement, and on the other hand, they lengthen the list of sanctions."

"I don't understand how this works," the Iranian President said.

"The world must give us the right not to trust the United States because they are violating their agreements," Raisi continued.

The sanctions come as talks with Iran on a return to the 2015 agreement remain stalled.

Iran scaled back its compliance with the 2015 deal, in response to former US President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the agreement in May of 2018, but has held several rounds of indirect talks with the US on a return to the agreement.

An agreement was nearly reached before the talks stopped in March. US Special Envoy for Iran Rob Malley told lawmakers recently that the prospects for reaching a deal with Iran are “tenuous” at best.

On Wednesday, Biden administration officials assured senators that the US would ramp up sanctions on Iran if needed as hopes dim for a diplomatic pathway on Tehran’s nuclear program.

(Israel National News' North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Israel National News articles, however, is Israeli time.)