President Barack Obama has signed legislation that was overwhelming passed by the U.S. Congress last month imposing new sanctions against Iran. The objective of the legislation is to deprive Iran of the resources to develop nuclear weapons by deterring certain foreign financial transactions and energy-related investments and trade with Iran.
The President and Congress are united in their objective of using these and other sanctions measures to persuade Iran to return to negotiations to address the world’s outstanding questions over its nuclear program.
Among other measures, it also extends penalties aimed at the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, specifically authorizing sanctions on persons "responsible for or complicit in human rights abuses committed against citizens of Iran or their family members after the June 12, 2009, elections in Iran."
President Obama stated during the signing ceremony that the new legislation demonstrates "broad and bipartisan support for holding Iran accountable:"
"I’m pleased to sign into law the toughest sanctions against Iran ever passed by the United States Congress – the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability and Divestment Act."
In a statement, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the United States "will work with our partners to maximize the impact of these efforts and to continue pursuing a diplomatic resolution to the international community's concerns regarding Iran's nuclear program."
Secretary of State Clinton also noted that the legislation addresses the Iranian government's continued violation of the fundamental rights of its citizens. "A year after the Iranian people took to the streets to protest an election, the leadership continues to violate its most fundamental duties of government, denying its people the right to speak freely, to assemble without fear, and to the equal administration of justice," she said. "We support the Congress' efforts to call attention to these violations, and the United States will continue to hold Iran accountable for its obligations to respect the rights of its own people."