Iran on Tuesday said United States’ sanctions on its Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and other senior officials has permanently closed the “path of diplomacy”. United States President Donald Trump had imposed the “hard-hitting” financial sanctions on Khamenei on Monday, holding him “ultimately responsible” for the Islamic republic’s alleged destabilising activities.

“Imposing useless sanctions on Iran’s Supreme Leader [Ayatollah Ali Khamenei] and the commander of Iran’s diplomacy [Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif] is the permanent closure of the path of diplomacy,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi tweeted. “Trump’s desperate administration is destroying the established international mechanisms for maintaining world peace and security.”

The sanctions are aimed at cutting off Iranian leadership’s access to financial resources, and barring them from using the United States’ financial system or having access to assets in America, according to Reuters.

Iran’s Ambassador to the United Nations Majid Takht Ravanchi said the country would not go into discussions with the United States while it is still under the threat of sanctions.

Tensions between Iran and the United States have steadily increased since last week, when Tehran shot down an American spy drone over the Strait of Hormuz. While Iran claimed the drone had violated its airspace, the US maintained it was shot down over international waters. The incident came days after the United States accused Iran of attacking two of its oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman on June 13.

Trump on Friday divulged that the United States had planned three airstrikes on Iran. However, he changed his mind 10 minutes before giving the go-ahead when he was reportedly informed that 150 people would die.