Trump administration hits Iran's central bank with terror sanctions

Trump administration hits Iran's central bank with terror sanctions

Trump administration hits Iran's central bank with terror sanctions

"The US won't allow Iran's more and more brazen abuse of the worldwide monetary system", Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin mentioned.

Valiollah Seif, the head of Iran's Central Bank, allegedly sent money to the IRGC-QF via the Iraq-based al-Bilad Islamic Bank to support Hezbollah's "violent and radical agenda".

Tuesday's action seeks to cut off what the USA called a "critical" banking network for Iran, and deny those blacklisted access to the global financial system.

At the time, the United States singled out the Central Bank of Iran as "complicit" in the operation, foreshadowing Tuesday's action.

The move comes a week after U.S. President Donald Trump announced that the United States was pulling out of the nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers.

A European official said that some senior figures in the United States administration were pushing for a "North Korea scenario" in Iran, in reference to the drastic sanctions imposed on the North Korean regime which Washington believes helped push the country's leader, Kim Jong Un, into halting missile and nuclear testing and agreeing to renewed negotiations.

Typically, when the USA punishes individuals with sanctions, it prohibits Americans or US companies from doing business with them.

The U.S. also said it is imposing so-called secondary sanctions on Seif, meaning anyone who does business with him could be cut off from the U.S. financial system.

The Treasury also blacklisted assistant director of the worldwide department of Iran's central bank Ali Tarzali and the chairman of Al-Bilad Islamic Bank Aras Habib.

In a statement on the website of the US Treasury said that the head of the Central Bank of Iran on behalf of the "revolutionary guards" transferred millions of dollars of terrorist organization "Hezbollah". US officials were reaching out Tuesday to central banks in other countries in the Middle East and Europe to inform them of the sanctions and encourage them to immediately freeze assets the bank has overseas. Hezbollah fought a war with Israel in 2006, and Israeli officials have been deeply concerned about the prospect of another confrontation.

Trump had threatened for more than a year to abandon the deal.

Although it is rare to sanction central bank officials, the US has done it before.

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