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Iran pushback

OFAC adds 25 parties to sanctioned list after ballistic missile tests last week

By: Chris Gillis
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Photo: M-SUR/Shutterstock
   The U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) on Friday sanctioned multiple entities and individuals involved in procuring technology to support Iran’s ballistic missile program, as well as the country’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF).
   OFAC said the actions are consistent with United States’ multilateral commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
   The agency added 25 parties to its Specially Designated Nationals List. These parties include 12 companies: five in Iran, four in Lebanon, two in China and one in the United Arab Emirates. All these parties are subject to U.S. secondary sanctions, meaning that in addition to their assets being blocked, non-U.S. parties risk being sanctioned by the United States for dealing with them.
   “Iran’s continued support for terrorism and development of its ballistic missile program poses a threat to the region, to our partners worldwide, and to the United States,” said Acting OFAC Director John E. Smith in a statement. “We will continue to actively apply all available tools, including financial sanctions, to address this behavior.”
   The Trump administration threatened to issue the executive order to impose the additional sanctions against Iran on Thursday in response to a missile test conducted by Iran Jan. 29. Last year, the U.S. government had begun to ease some trade sanctions put in place against Iran in 2009 under the JCPOA.
   Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and an outspoken critic of Iran’s nuclear policies, praised the administration’s swift action to impose the new sanctions.
   “A coordinated, multi-faceted effort to pushback against a range of illicit Iranian behavior is long overdue,” Corker said. “I look forward to working with the Trump administration and my congressional colleagues in a bipartisan manner to strongly enforce nuclear restrictions and further hold Iran accountable.”
   Corker voted against a 2015 deal with Iran that halted the country’s development of nuclear capabilities, and led the opposition to it in Congress.
   OFAC’s Specially Designated Nationals List contains a complete database of the entities and individuals.