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New Sanctions On Iran

New Sanctions On Iran

The United States has imposed new sanctions on Iran to combat Tehran’s ability to finance terrorist activities and a nuclear weapons program. U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said the additional measures were necessary because Iran exploits its global financial ties to pursue its destructive policies:

“In dealing with Iran, it is nearly impossible to know one’s customer and be assured that one is not unwittingly facilitating the regime’s reckless behavior and conduct.”

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said that the new sanctions target the Iranian military and its banking system:

“Many of the Iranian regime’s most destabilizing policies are carried out by two of its agencies: the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, or the I-R-G-C, and the Quds force, an arm of the I-R-G-C. Because of the Revolutionary Guards support for proliferation and because of the Quds force support for terrorism, acting under U.S. law and consistent with our international obligations, the United States today is designating both of these groups. We are similarly designating three Iranian state-owned banks: Bank Melli and Mellat, for their involvement in proliferation activities, and Bank Saderat as a terrorist financier. We are also designating several additional Iranian individuals and organizations.”

The new measures mean that no U.S. citizen or private organization will be allowed to engage in financial transactions with these persons or organizations. In addition, said Secretary of State Rice, any assets that these designees have under U.S. jurisdiction will be immediately frozen:

“These actions will help to protect the international financial system from the illicit activities of the Iranian government and they will provide a powerful deterrent to every international bank and company that thinks of doing business with the Iranian government.”

Secretary of State Rice said that the U.S. and its partners remain “fully committed to a diplomatic solution with Iran. . . .But if Iran’s rulers choose to continue down a path of confrontation, the United States will act with the international community to resist these threats of the Iranian regime.”