The Trump administration’s Treasury Department announced 14 new sanctions Friday against Iranian individuals or entities related to that country’s nuclear ambitions, according to senior administration officials, even as the State Department announced they would re-certify Obama’s Iran nuclear deal.
President Trump has also indicated this is the last time he will re-certify his predecessor’s nuclear deal, officially named the Joint Commission Plan of Action (JCPOA), opening future certification deadlines up for negotiation with other European signatories with the intent to encourage those signatories to take an active role in keeping watch over Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
[T]he Trump administration intends to work with European partners on a type of “follow-on” agreement that includes “certain triggers” Iran must follow, including nuclear inspections and restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program that have no sunset. Other nations have clearly stated that the U.S. cannot revise the JCPOA itself.
The administration announced Thursday new sanctions were forthcoming as renewal of the JCPOA faced another renewal deadline.
The president’s top national security advisers met with Trump on Thursday afternoon at the White House ahead of a deadline Friday for the president to again exempt Iran from a suite of tough economic sanctions imposed years ago. Announcement of the decision was expected Thursday night or Friday morning. If those sanctions are reimposed, the United States would violate the deal brokered by his predecessor that lifted sanctions in exchange for a rollback of Iran’s nuclear development program.
“You’re going to be finding out very soon,” Trump said Thursday when asked about Iran. “You’ll be finding that out very soon.”
Following the announcement of re-certification, senior administration officials briefed reporters on more than a dozen new sanctions out of the Treasury Department on Iranian individuals and entities related to the anti-government protests that have occurred in several cities in Iran over the past several weeks.
The new sanctions target, among others, companies that supply military support; the prison that currently holds arrested protesters and is rumored to be engaging in human rights abuses; and the brother of the speaker of the Iranian parliament, who is a top official in the Iranian judiciary.
Senior administration officials noted that this last sanction was intended to send a “strong message” because it reaches into the top echelon of the Iranian government.