Breaking: US slams new sanctions on Iran

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The U.S. is hitting Iran with fresh sanctions in response to the Islamic Republic’s missile attacks against American forces housed at Iraqi bases.

he new penalties will be imposed against any individual owning, operating, trading with or assisting sectors of the Iranian economy, including construction, manufacturing, textiles and mining, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Friday, adding that the sanctions will be both primary and secondary.

Additionally, 17 additional sanctions will be placed on Iran’s largest steel and iron manufacturers, three Seychelles-based entities and a vessel involved in the transfer of product, which will “cut off billions of support to the Iranian regime,” he said.

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Finally, the U.S. will place penalties on eight senior Iranian officials who were involved in Tuesday’s missile attack.

Tough U.S. sanctions have already taken a toll on Iran’s economy. The Islamic Republic was the world’s fifth-largest oil producer in 2017, but its rank has fallen since.

“In November 2018, Trump tightened sanctions on Tehran, which led oil production to nearly halve over the last few years and exports to fall close to zero,” wrote Bank of America analyst Christopher Kuplent. As a result, Iran’s real GDP declined about 10 per cent in 2019, according to International Monetary Fund data.

Last September, the Trump administration placed additional sanctions on Iran’s central bank and its sovereign wealth fund. A few months before that, sanctions were imposed on the country’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and top diplomats.