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U.S. Imposes Sanctions Aimed At Iran's Ballistic-Missile Program

By RFE/RL March 30, 2022

The United States has imposed sanctions on an Iran-based procurement agent and his network of companies for providing assistance to Iran's ballistic-missile program, the Treasury Department has said.

The Treasury said Mohammad Ali Hosseini and the companies procured ballistic-missile-propellant-related materials for a unit of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) that is responsible for the research and development of ballistic missiles.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement said the United States took the action following the Iranian missile attack on Irbil, Iraq, and attacks by Iranian proxies against Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

The IRGC claimed responsibility for the March 13 attack on Irbil, which targeted the U.S. Consulate's new building and the neighboring residential area but caused only material damage. One civilian was injured, Kurdish officials said at the time.

The attacks were "a reminder that Iran's development and proliferation of ballistic missiles pose a serious threat to regional and international security," Blinken said.

The sanctions freeze any U.S. assets of those targeted and generally bar Americans from dealing with them. Those that engage in certain transactions with them also risk being hit with sanctions, the Treasury said.

The Iranian mission to the United Nations did not immediately respond to a request for comment, Reuters reported.

Blinken, who is on a tour of the Middle East, said the United States will "continue to use every tool at our disposal to disrupt them."

Speaking in Algeria, he told reporters that he assured Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Muhammad bin Zayed al-Nahyan in Morocco the day before of Washington's support against attacks from the Iran-aligned Huthis in Yemen and welcomed the U.A.E.'s support for a truce in Yemen that could lead to a cease-fire.

Blinken said energy was not a focus of the talks even though Washington wants Persian Gulf states to increase oil production to tame rising crude prices, partly caused by Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

With reporting by AP and Reuters

Source: https://www.rferl.org/a/us-sanctions-iran- ballistic-missiles/31778480.html

Copyright (c) 2022. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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