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Trump administration considers imposing new Tehran sanctions to 'isolate' Iran from world

The Trump administration wants to 'isolate' Iran [Getty]

Date of publication: 29 September, 2020

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The Trump administration is considering imposing new sanctions on Iran to isolate its economy 'from the world'.

US President Donald Trump's administration is mulling new sanctions on Iran to further isolate the Islamic Republic's economy from the outside world, according to a reports.

The sanctions will target over a dozen banks and label Iran's  entire financial sector "off-limits", three people familiar with the matter said, according to Bloomberg.

The potential move would leave Tehran isolated from the global financial system by removing the few remaining legal trade avenues between it and the rest of the world, something that would have a devastating impact on the country.

Read also: World powers dismiss US sanctions against Iran

The proposed sanctions would have two objectives, according to the anonymous officials: close one of the few remaining financial loopholes allowing Tehran to earn revenues, and stalemate Democrat Joe Biden's promise to re-enter a 2015 nuclear deal if he wins the November presidential elections. 

Under the plan, the Washington would designate the Iranian financial sector under Executive Order 13902, which Trump signed in January to clamp down on mining, construction and other industries. 

The order would not only affect banks, but also remittance processors, money-changers and the informal transfer system used frequently in the Muslim world known as hawla

Several Trump officials were initially taken back by the proposal for fear they could complicate the provision of international humanitarian assistance to Iran, which has dealt with one of the worst coronavirus outbreaks during the current global pandemic. 

However, the proposal has since gained more support from hardliner anti-Iran officials who claim it would be possible to mitigate the humanitarian costs under the new sanctions.

A spokesperson from the Treasury Department, along with press officials from the National Security Council and the State Department have declined to comment.

The proposal has not yet been sent to US President Donald Trump and is still being reviewed.

Trump's sanctions against Iran

Trump has taken a hardline approach against Iran throughout the whole of his presidency, backing out of a landmark 2015 deal on Iran's nuclear programme by his predecessor Barack Obama.

On 8 May 2018, President Donald Trump withdrew the US from the deal negotiated between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council – the UK, China, France, Russia and the United States – plus Germany.

In August and November 2018, Washington reimposes sanctions on Iran and companies with ties to it, notably hitting Iran's vital oil sector and central bank.

Trump has insisted that one of the inadequacies of the nuclear deal is the failure to address Iran's ballistic missile programme or its interventions in other Middle East countries.

On the streets of Tehran, Iranians complained of harsh economic conditions they blamed on US sanctions.

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