U.S. threatens Russia and China against ignoring Iran sanctions, hinting new sanctions could be imposed on both countries

NEW YORK — After Russia and China vetoed the U.S.-drafted U.N. Security Council resolution extending an arms embargo on Iran, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned both countries against ignoring the re-imposition of all U.N. sanctions on Iran during Thursday’s UNSC session.

The U.S. failed in its effort to indefinitely extend the arms embargo against Iran during last Friday’s UNSC session.

When questioned about the possibility of the U.S. sanctioning Russia and China in the event they refused to extend the U.N. sanctions on Iran, Pompeo responded that the U.S. had already imposed sanctions on both countries.

The U.S. could still trigger “snapback” sanctions if it fails to extend the arms embargo on Thursday.

To bring the sanctions into force, the U.S. would have to submit a complaint to the UNSC about Iranian violations of the nuclear deal.

The Security Council would then have 30 days to vote on a resolution to continue Iran’s sanctions relief. In the absence of a resolution before the 30-day deadline, all U.N. sanctions in place before the 2015 nuclear deal would be automatically reimposed.

It is expected that the U.S. would submit such a complaint soon after Thursday’s session should sanctions not be imposed.

It is unclear what, if any, steps Russia and China will take to prevent the U.S. move to impose snapback sanction.