The United States has hit senior officials and the manufacturing and metal sectors in Iran with new sanctions following attack on US and allied troops stationed in Iraq.
Addressing the joint news conference with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Friday said: "The President is issuing an executive order authorising the imposition of additional sanctions against any individual owning, operating, trading with, or assisting sectors of the Iranian economy including construction, manufacturing, textiles, and mining." The new sanctions come amid heightened tension between Tehran and Washington. Iran carried out the missile strikes in retaliation for the US drone attack that killed Iran's Revolutionary Guard General Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad last week, CNN reported.
Through the sanctions, the US is planning to further isolate Iran in the hopes that it will return to the table to renegotiate the 2015 Nuclear deal aimed at limiting Tehran nuclear program. Trump withdrew from the deal in 2018 and since then has imposed economic sanctions.
Additionally, the US is announcing 17 specific sanctions against Iran's largest steel and iron manufacturers, three Seychelles-based entities, and a vessel involved in the transfer of products. Last year, the administration targeted Iran's largest shipping company and a major airline for their role in transporting material for the country's ballistic missile and nuclear programs.
In late June, new sanctions were imposed on Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of Iran, and his office to block access to the international finance system. A few weeks later, the administration also added Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iran's foreign minister and its top negotiator on the nuclear deal, to the sanctions list. (ANU)