Iran vows to reciprocate the European Union and the UK's recent repetitive move to impose sanctions on Iranian targets over, what Brussels and London have called, human rights violations.
"The confrontational and sanction policy will be met with Iran's proportional response," Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian told his Belgian counterpart Hadja Lahbib during a telephone conversation on Monday.
Earlier in the day, the European Union announced that it was imposing restrictive measures on additional eight individuals and one entity, including members of the Judiciary, a member of the Iranian parliament, clerics, and a senior official of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB).
Also on Monday, Britain imposed sanctions on more senior officials of Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), including those whom it claimed were responsible for managing the elite force's financial investments.
Both Brussels and London have alleged that they have resorted to the coercive measures over, what they called were, the Islamic Republic's treatment of foreign-backed riots that followed the death of a young Iranian woman in police custody last year.
The riots erupted in September following the tragic death of the woman, named Mahsa Amini. She fainted at a police station in Tehran and was pronounced dead three days later at the hospital. An official report by Iran’s Legal Medicine Organization has concluded that Amini’s death had been caused by illness rather than alleged blows to the head or other vital body organs.
Following her death, rioters went on a rampage, brutally attacking security officers and causing massive damage to public property. Dozens of people and security personnel were killed during the riots.
Amir-Abdollahian condemned the EU and the UK's recent bans, saying, "Some European parties accuse others of seeking recourse to violence, while themselves have a dark history of dual behavior concerning the issue of human rights and [tow a history of] systematic violation of these rights."
He cited the French police's treatment of recent protests against Paris' plans to raise the retirement age as a case in point.
The Belgian official, for her part, condemned any instance of dual approach, insisting on the need for resolution of standing differences between Tehran and Brussels through negotiation.