Saturday, May 18, 2024
 
 

US slaps new separate sanctions on Iran, Russia and Hamas

Separate sanctions packages against Iran and Hamas announced

By Mil.gov.ua, CC BY 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org
Iranian Shahed UAVs

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On October 18, the US Department of State announced new separate sanctions packages against Iran and Hamas; they are not directly connected. A number of Russian enterprises involved in transactions with Iran were also designated for this set of sanctions, even though they had already been sanctioned last year.  The separate Hamas sanctions target Hamas’ terrorist financial support networks across the Middle East.

Regarding the sanctions on various Iranian weapons proliferation activities, the State Department released the following statement.

“Iran’s proliferation-sensitive activities remain one of the greatest challenges to international peace and security.  The United States will continue to use all tools at our disposal to disrupt and counter Iran’s missile, unmanned aerial vehicle, better known as UAVs, and conventional arms-related activities.  The Department of State is now taking actions to further constrain Iran’s destabilizing activities, including its growing military relationship with Russia.

The Department is designating two Iranian individuals for engaging in activities that have materially contributed to Iran’s missile program:

Amir Radfar, the current director of Shahid Bagheri Industrial Group, or SBIG, which is responsible for the development and production of Iran’s solid-propellant ballistic missiles, and Vahid Soleimani, a senior official of SBIG.

The State Department also designated two Iran-based entities and four Russia-entities for engaging in activities that have materially contributed to the supply, sale, or transfer, directly or indirectly, to or from Iran, or for the use in or benefit of Iran, of arms or related materiel, including spare parts:

– HESA, the Iran Aircraft Manufacturing Industrial Company, which produces the Ababil, Shahed, and Karrarr combat UAVs.  HESA was previously designated pursuant on September 17, 2008.

– The Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force, which recently took delivery of Yak-130 light combat aircraft from Russia.

– Rosoboroneksport, Russia’s sole state-controlled intermediary agency for exporting and importing the entire range of military and defense products, technologies, and services, was involved in the transfer of conventional arms and related materiel to and from Iran.  Rosoboroneksport was previously designated on June 28, 2022, April 6, 2018, and December 22, 2015.

– The Russian Federation’s 924th State Center for Unmanned Aviation, which sent Russian personnel to Iran for training on Iranian UAVs.  The 924th was previously designated on December 9, 2022.

– Russia’s Aerospace Forces, the VKS, the intended beneficiary of the Russia-Iran agreement on transferring UAVs.  VKS was previously designated on December 9, 2022.

– The VTA, the Russian Armed Forces’ Military Transport Aviation Command, which was involved in the transfer of UAVs from Iran to Russia.  The VTA was previously designated on December 9, 2022.

Wide ranging Hamas sanctions

A statement signed by Secretary of State Antony Blinken on October 18 provides a description of the new American sanctions on Hamas, saying: “The horrific attacks that Hamas terrorists perpetrated on October 7 against civilians in Israel shocked the world. The United States has expressed our unconditional support to the people of Israel as they go through these tragic times. We continue to condemn these acts of terrorism that resulted in numerous lives lost and families shattered.

Today, the United States is imposing sanctions on ten key Hamas terrorist group members, operatives, and financial facilitators in Gaza and elsewhere. These individuals have supported Hamas and other terrorist organizations, enabling Hamas to conduct its brutal terrorism and carry out acts like the vicious attack on Israel.

Today’s actions are directed at Hamas terrorists and their support network, not Palestinians. Hamas alone is responsible for the carnage its militants have inflicted on the people of Israel, and it should immediately release all hostages in its custody. The United States will not relent in using all the tools at our disposal to disrupt Hamas terrorist activity.

The Department of the Treasury designations were taken under Executive Order 13224, as amended, which targets terrorists, terrorist organizations, leaders, and officials of terrorist groups, and those providing support to terrorists or acts of terrorism.”

On October 18, the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control provided further details on its latest set of sanctions covering ten key Hamas terrorist group members, operatives, and financial facilitators in Gaza and elsewhere including Sudan, Turkey, Algeria, and Qatar.

The Office of Foreign Assets said its action targets members managing assets in a secret Hamas investment portfolio, a Qatar-based financial facilitator with close ties to the Iranian regime, a key Hamas commander, and a Gaza-based virtual currency exchange and its operator.

See the full text here:  https://home.treasury.gov/news/press-releases/jy1816

 

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