U.S. issues Iran-related sanctions over drone program

Drones are seen during a large-scale drone combat exercise of Army of the Islamic Republic of Iran, in Semnan, Iran January 4, 2021. Picture taken January 4, 2021. (Reuters)

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — The United States has issued a fresh round of Iran-related sanctions tied to an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps drone program that it said threatened regional stability, the Treasury Department said on Friday.

U.S. officials, in a statement, said the IRGC has been providing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) or drones for use by Iran-backed groups, including Lebanese militant group Hezbollah, and in crisis-hit Ethiopia.

“Iran’s proliferation of UAVs across the region threatens international peace and stability. Iran and its proxy militants have used UAVs to attack U.S. forces, our partners, and international shipping,” Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo said.

“Treasury will continue to hold Iran accountable for its irresponsible and violent acts,” Adeyemo added.

The sanctions announced Friday targeting four people, including Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Brigadier General Saeed Aghajani, who the United States says oversees the UAV operations of the Aerospace Force.

The Treasury Department’s actions also target two companies — Kimia Part Sivan Co. and Oje Parvaz Mado Nafar Co. — that it said procured components for the program and provided other assistance.

The sanctions will block access to property subject to U.S. jurisdiction of the persons designated, while U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with the designated persons or their blocked property, the Treasury said.

(Esta Media Network/Reuters)

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