Trump Administration Hits Iranian Companies With New Sanctions

The Trump administration announced on Dec. 11 new sanctions against three Iranian entities, including a shipping company and an airline.

The Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines, its China-based subsidiary E-Sail Shipping Company Ltd, and the airline Mahan Air have been linked to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs), according to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

The sanctions “should serve as a warning that doing business with” the three entities “risks contributing to Irans proliferation-sensitive programs, including its nuclear and missile programs,” Pompeo said in a statement.

He told reporters at a press briefing that the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines “is the shipping line of choice for Iranian proliferators and procurement agents.” Since sanctions were lifted in Jan. 2016, the network “has knowingly engaged in activities and transactions that materially contribute to Irans proliferation of WMDs,” according to Pompeo.

The designations for the shipping network and its subsidiary will not be implemented immediately so that exporters of humanitarian goods to Iran can find other shipping methods but the sanctions on Mahan Air and three of its general sales agents based in the United Arab Emirates and Hong Kong is effective immediately.

Mahan Air was designated in Oct. 2011 for providing support to Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps forces. The designation recognized how the airline shipped United Nations-restricted missile and nuclear items to Iran, including controlled graphite, Pompeo said.

Ambassador Nathan Sales
Ambassador Nathan Sales
Brian Hook (R), U.S. Special Representative for Iran, and Ambassador Nathan Sales (L), State Department Coordinator for Counterterrorism, speak after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that the United States will designate Irans Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a Foreign Terrorist Organization during a press conference at the State Department in Washington on April 8, 2019. (Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images)
Ali Fadavi, deputy chief of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), left, speaks to another member of the military during Basij Week in the Iranian capital Tehran on Nov. 24, 2019. (Atta Kenare/AFP via Getty Images)

The Department of Treasury said that several other shipping networks were being sanctioned. One, the Khedri Jahan Darya Co. shipping line, was involved in smuggling lethal aid from Iran to Yemen on behalf of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps and its Qods Force arm, which is involved in paramilitary and espionage operations.

The force, which was designated as a foreign terrorist orgaRead More – Source