“I did not say we would abide by the sanctions” (Image: GETTY )
| UPDATED: 03:29, Tue, Aug 14, 2018
Speaking at a news conference in Baghdad, Mr al-Abadi said: “I did not say we would abide by the sanctions.
“We have no other choice.”
Asked whether Iraq will halt imports of equipment and commodities from Iranian state-owned companies, he said: “We honestly have not made any decision regarding this issue until now.”
However just last week Mr al-Abadi suggested Iraq would abide by the sanctions, despite disagreeing with them.
He explained: “Can I, the Prime Minister of Iraq, endanger the interests of Iraq just to make a stand?
“We don’t sympathise with the sanctions, we don’t think they are appropriate, but we are committed to protect our people.”
Mr al-Abadi had been due to visit Iran for an official visit later this month, but the visit was abruptly cancelled by the Iranian government.
“Can I, the Prime Minister of Iraq, endanger the interests of Iraq just to make a stand?” (Image: GETTY)
According to a senior Iraqi official this was in direct response to Mr al-Abadi’s earlier suggestion that Iraq would obey US sanctions.
US President Donald Trump announced the US was pulling out of the Iranian nuclear deal in May.
The accord was designed to prevent Iran acquiring nuclear weapons.
The US leader claimed Iran wasn’t honouring the spirit of the deal and was continuing to back terror groups across the Middle East.
This move was condemned by other signatories of the deal, with the UK, France and Germany issuing a joint statement expressing “regret and concern”.
The US has since reinstated sanctions against the Middle Eastern nation, with one round being reapplied earlier this month, while a second will come into effect in November.
US President Donald Trump announced the US was pulling out of the Iranian nuclear deal in May (Image: GETTY )
The US has warned that it will restrict trade with any country which ignores the sanctions.
President Trump Tweeted: “Anyone doing business with Iran will not be doing business with the United States.”