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More US sanctions against Iran for drone and weapons programs

22 March 2023 21:10 (UTC+04:00)
More US sanctions against Iran for drone and weapons programs

The US issued more Iran-related sanctions on Tuesday, targeting four companies and three individuals in Turkiye and Iran accused of aiding Tehran’s drone programs, Azernews reports citing Al Arabiya.

The latest sanctions target what the US says is involvement in procuring equipment, including European-origin engines of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) in support of Iran’s drone and weapons programs.

This procurement network is working on behalf of the Iranian ministry of defense and armed forces logistics (MODAFL), according to the Treasury Department.

“Iran’s proliferation of weapons destabilizes the Middle East,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said. And the US will continue to act to disrupt Iran’s proliferation of UAVs and work with allies and partners to counter Iran’s weapons proliferation, the top US diplomat vowed.

For his part, Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian Nelson said that “Iran’s well-documented” proliferation of UAVs and conventional weapons to its proxies continues to undermine both regional security and global stability. “The United States will continue to expose foreign procurement networks in any jurisdiction that supports Iran’s military-industrial complex,” Nelson added.

Tuesday’s sanctions come after an earlier move this month by the US to designate a China-based network in connection with Iran’s drone program. Washington has ramped up sanctions targeting Iran’s drone manufacturers and their executives since September 2022. This was around when talks to revive the 2015 nuclear deal appeared to hit a standstill, and the Biden administration responded with increased pressure via sanctions.


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