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US impose sanctions on Iran despite nuclear deal compliance

July 19, 2017 at 2:38 pm

Having certified that Iran is complying with the terms of the nuclear deal late on Monday, the US administration imposed fresh new sanctions on individuals, groups and entities involved in activities including aiding Iran’s military guard, missile development, weapons procurement, and software theft.

Trump has condemned the nuclear deal brokered by former president Barack Obama a number of times, stating that it is a capitulation to Iran.

In total 16 Iranian individuals, groups and networks were sanctioned yesterday by the Trump administration. Seven groups and five people accused of aiding Iran’s military or its Revolutionary Guards have also been targeted by the US treasury.

The US Department of Treasury revealed details of the fresh sanctions in its press statement this morning:

“Today, the US Department of the Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), designated 16 entities and individuals for engaging in support of illicit Iranian actors or transnational criminal activity,” the statement said.

Read: Trump says Iran complying with nuclear deal but remains dangerous threat

“These designations include seven entities and five individuals for engaging in activities in support of Iran’s military or Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), as well as an Iran-based transnational criminal organisation and three associated persons.”

Reasons cited for the new sanctions include aiding “Iran’s military procurement or the IRGC through the development of unmanned aerial vehicles and military equipment for the IRGC”.

The statement confirmed that two Iranian businessmen were sanctioned for orchestrating “the theft of US and western software programs which, at times, were sold to the government of Iran”.

The decision to take a tougher stance against Iran came only a day after Trump ratified the 2015 nuclear deal. Under US law, the State Department must notify Congress every 90 days of Iran’s compliance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). The deadline for the second notification was last Monday.

It is reported that Trump agreed to certify the deal, despite criticising it throughout his election campaign as a “bad deal”. The New York Times reported that Trump’s aides said that the US President was “frustrated” and that he had informed his security team that he would not keep certifying the deal indefinitely.


Iran has accused the US of breaching the “spirit” of the deal. Speaking in New York last week, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif criticised the US’s failure to uphold the “spirit” of the 2015 nuclear agreement, by “not allowing Iran to enjoy the full benefits of the nuclear deal”.

Zarif was particularly irritated by the fact that measures taken by the US government and Congress have prevented leading banks across the world from reviving ties with Iran. The move, he claims, is against the JCPOA which underlines improvement of banking cooperation with the Islamic Republic.