They are directed to a network linked to the drone program of the Persian country to “continue to demand that it be held accountable for its irresponsible and violent actions”
After it emerged that the United States suspects Iran after an attack on a military base in Syria , the White House on Friday imposed new financial sanctions on a “network” linked to the Iranian drone program.
This new round of sanctions comes just as pressure on Iran is intensifying ahead of the resumption of negotiations to save the nuclear deal .
The US Treasury pledged in a statement to “continue to hold Iran accountable for its irresponsible and violent actions,” while Washington accuses Tehran of using its drones to fuel numerous conflicts in the Middle East.
Two companies that support the Revolutionary Guard’s drone program , the ideological army of the Islamic Republic, are in the crosshairs of the sanctions.
Although the sanctions are unrelated to Iran’s atomic program , the Biden administration has said it wants to build a potential deal to revive the languishing 2015 nuclear deal to include Iranian support for such groups and reduce their development of ballistic missiles.
General Saeed Aghajani , who oversees the operation of the Guardians’ drones and was already on another US blacklist, was also affected by the new sanctions , as was General Abdollah Mehrabi , another senior official in the US military. Iranian elite.
The assets they may have in the United States will be frozen and they will be prohibited from accessing the US financial system.
The Qods Force, responsible for the international operations of the Revolutionary Guard, “has used lethal drones and promoted their proliferation among Iranian-backed groups,” such as the Lebanese Hezbollah, Palestinian Hamas and the Houthi rebels in Yemen, “as well as in Ethiopia, where the crisis is worsening and threatens to destabilize the entire region, “says the Treasury in its statement.
“Lethal drones have been used in attacks against international ships and US forces,” he added, referring to events that have caused great tensions in recent years.
The sanctions come after Iran announced that it is willing to resume indirect talks with the United States in November to save the agreement that was supposed to prevent it from acquiring nuclear weapons, suspended since June.
These talks focus on the sanctions that Washington is willing to lift in exchange for Tehran to once again enforce restrictions on its nuclear program.
Meanwhile, Joe Biden is preparing for a key weekend meeting with European leaders to discuss the possible resumption of nuclear talks with the Islamic Republic .
Iran has yet to commit to a date to return to nuclear talks in Vienna, but has signaled that it will do so next week with the aim of resuming negotiations by the end of November. The United States and others have expressed skepticism about Iranian intentions , and Biden will meet with the leaders of Britain, France and Germany on Saturday in Rome to map out a strategy on Iran.
The Vienna negotiations came to a halt in June before the Iranian elections that brought hardline President Ebrahim Raisi to power. The talks, which do not directly involve the United States because President Donald Trump withdrew from the nuclear deal in 2018, have since languished despite declared intentions by both Washington and Tehran to return to compliance with the deal.