Beijing said Washington's decision to impose sanctions on buyers of Iranian oil will "intensify turmoil" in the Middle East. The US said on Monday it will penalise any imports of Iranian oil from May 2.
China warned Tuesday that the US decision to impose sanctions on buyers of Iranian oil will "intensify turmoil" in the Middle East and in the international energy market.
"China firmly opposes the US implementation of unilateral sanctions and its so-called long-armed jurisdiction," foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said at a regular press briefing.
China's foreign ministry said it has lodged representations with the United States over Washington's plan to end waivers for Iranian oil imports.
Washington has announced that all Iran sanction waivers will end by May, sending crude oil prices higher and pressuring importers to stop buying from Tehran.
The latest US move came after Trump in May ripped up a multilateral agreement between Tehran and six other countries on Iran's nuclear industry, calling it "worst deal ever," despite US allies and international agencies agreeing that Tehran had honoured the deal. Apart from the US, signatories to that deal – agreed by Trump's predecessor Barack Obama – were Iran, Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia.
Trump also recently added Iran's Revolutionary Guard to Washington's terror list, the first time the US has listed another's country's military as a terrorist organisation.
Saudi Arabia welcomes Trump's latest show of support
Saudi Arabia's foreign minister on Tuesday welcomed the US decision to end the Iran waivers, saying it was a necessary step to halt what it called Tehran's "destabilising" policy in the region.
"Saudi Arabia fully supports this step taken by the United States as it is necessary to force the Iranian regime to end its policy of destabilising stability and its support and sponsorship of terrorism around the world," Ibrahim al Assaf said in comments carried on state media.
He reiterated a statement issued by the kingdom's energy minister on Monday that the world's largest oil exporter would coordinate with other oil producers to ensure an adequate crude supply and balanced markets after Washington's announcement.
The Trump White House and Saudi Arabia have a close relationship. Recently, the president vetoed a bipartisan vote in Congress to halt US support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen.
The civil and regional proxy war pits the Saudi-led coalition backing the Yemeni government-in-exile against Iran-linked Houthi rebels who occupy the capital Sanaa. The UN says the war is a humanitarian disaster with millions of people facing starvation.
The White House has also ignored the findings of US intelligence agencies that Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman – a friend of Trump's son-in-law and close adviser Jared Kushner – was behind the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi at its consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, in October last year.