January 10, 2020
- The sanctions will hit eight senior Iranian individuals involved in Tuesday’s strikes on US positions
- Mnuchin said the move would cut off access to “billions of dollars” for the regime
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin brief reporters about additional sanctions placed on Iran, at the White House, Friday, Jan. 10, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
By Arab News
WASHINGTON – The Trump administration imposed new sanctions on Iran on Friday following the Islamic Republic’s attacks on US air bases in Iraq.
“We are announcing additional sanctions against the Iranian regime,” US Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin said at a White House news conference with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
Mnuchin said President Donald Trump will issue an executive order imposing sanctions on anyone involved in the Iranian manufacturing, construction, textile or mining sectors. Separate sanctions will also hit the steel and iron sectors.
The new sanctions target eight senior Iranian officials involved in what Pompeo called “destabilizing activities” in the Middle East as well as Tuesday’s missile strike.
“As a result of these actions we will cut off billions of dollars of support to the Iranian regime,” the Treasury secretary said.
Trump’s administration has already reinstated all the US sanctions that were eased under the 2015 nuclear deal, which has caused significant economic hardship in Iran and cut its oil exports to historic lows.
Iran this week launched the strikes in retaliation for the US drone strike that killed Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) General Qassem Soleimani, the country’s most powerful commander, in Baghdad last week.
Meanwhile, Mnuchin said the Treasury will grant sanction waivers to allow American citizens or any one else to participate in the investigation of Wednesday’s crash of an Ukrainian International Boeing 737-800 airliner in Iran that killed 176 people.
Under U.S. sanctions law, the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) must grant approval for U.S. investigators and Boeing Co to participate and potentially travel to Iran. Boeing said Friday it was working with the Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board “on the necessary applications and approvals from OFAC for the appropriate export licenses.”
Pompeo said it was “likely that plane was shot down by an Iranian missile.”
Elsewhere on Friday, the US military tried, but failed, to take out another senior Iranian commander in Yemen on the same day that an American airstrike killed Soleimani, US officials said.
The officials said a military airstrike targeted Abdul Reza Shahla’i, a high-ranking commander in Iran’s IRGC but the mission was not successful.