The Trump administration announced on Friday that it was exempting eight countries from bruising sanctions that the United States was reimposing against Iran, undercutting its pledge to economically punish Tehran’s regional aggressions while widening a profound rift with European allies.
Mike Pompeo, the secretary of state, did not identify the eight countries that were being granted six-month waivers, but a senior official confirmed that they include India, South Korea, Japan and China — among the world’s largest importers of Iranian oil.
Mr. Pompeo said the European Union, which recently announced the creation of an economic channel to continue financial dealings with Iran, was not among those receiving waivers.
The sanctions were promised in May, when President Trump announced that the United States was withdrawing from a 2015 deal with world powers to limit Iran’s nuclear program.
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