US special representative for Iran, Brian Hook, reacted to the EU decision, saying it sent “the wrong message at the wrong time,” Reuters reported.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also slammed the EU economic aid plan for Iran, saying that it’s a “big mistake.” He warned that the bloc will come to regret it.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Saturday stressed that the EU’s aid plan had nothing to do with the bloc’s expected package of economic measures to save the nuclear deal.
He added that the package helps both sides to continue relations.
The EU decision on Thursday to provide 18 million euros ($20.7 million) in aid to Iran was aimed at offsetting the impact of US sanctions as European countries try to salvage the 2015 agreement.
President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of the nuclear deal in May and is reimposing sanctions on Tehran, even as other parties to the accord are trying to find ways to save the agreement.
The EU funding is part of a wider package of 50 million euros earmarked in the EU budget for Iran, which has threatened to stop complying with the nuclear accord if it fails to see the economic benefit of relief from sanctions.
The United States is pressing other countries to comply with its sanctions.