The government of the United States has re-imposed tough sanctions against Iran. The sanctions target financial deals with Iran, as well as purchases of Iranian oil, petrochemicals and petroleum products. Iranian oil provides 80 percent of Tehran’s tax revenue.
The order also includes provisions to pressure companies in other countries to comply with the US sanctions against Iran. The administration says that the measures are necessary to dissuade foreign companies from undercutting the sanctions. The Treasury Department has also been using its Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons (SDN) list to economically target Iranian officials and institutions.
The US says the sanctions are aimed persuading Iran’s government to end its support for regional militant groups and halt the country’s development of long-range ballistic missiles. Some companies have already announced that they are ending operations in Iran for fear of running afoul of the US sanctions. The Trump administration has vowed to pursue offenders aggressively.
President Trump announced in May that the US would be leaving the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran Nuclear Deal. The deal was negotiated under the Obama administration. The decision to withdraw angered the deal’s other supporters. The European Union, Russia and China have all agreed to continue supporting the JCPOA deal. The EU has passed a statute requiring companies in the EU to not comply with the sanctions.
This was the second batch of penalties to be restored. In August, the Trump administration re-imposed restrictions on Iran’s exports of auto/aerospace products and services and limited its government’s ability to obtain U.S. dollars and precious metals. After re-imposing the sanctions, President Trump tweeted: “Anyone doing business with Iran will NOT be doing business with the United States.”
Sunday was the 39th anniversary of the US Embassy takeover in Tehran. Iran’s government celebrates the embassy takeover every year. Shortly after the 1979 Islamic Revolution, the embassy was taken over and 52 Americans were taken hostage. They remained in captivity for 444 days.