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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

US plans new sanctions on Iran after attacks on Israel

Demonstrators show their support for Iran’s attack on Israel in Palestine Square in Tehran, Iran, Monday, April 15, 2024. (Arash Khamooshi/The New York Times)

By Alan Rappeport

The United States plans to impose new sanctions on Iran in the coming days to punish it for the attacks on Israel over the weekend, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said Tuesday.

Yellen declined to elaborate on what form the sanctions might take, but suggested that the Biden administration is considering ways to further restrict Iranian oil exports.

The United States is also looking at ways to cut off Iran’s access to military components that it uses to build weapons such as the drones that it used against Israel, according to a Treasury official, who declined to be named in order to discuss private deliberations.

The United States has imposed extensive sanctions on Iran over the years as part of a broad effort to put pressure on its economy and prevent it from acquiring nuclear weapons. Yellen noted that the Biden administration had already targeted more than 500 Iranian individuals and entities associated with terrorist financing over the last three years.

“I fully expect that we will take additional sanctions action against Iran in the coming days,” Yellen said at a news conference before the spring meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank in Washington.

Yellen said the United States does not generally reveal the details of sanctions before imposing them, but she signaled that the Biden administration is focusing on Iranian oil, which is a major source of its government revenue.

“We have been working to diminish Iran’s ability to export oil,” Yellen said. “Clearly Iran is continuing to export some oil — there may be more that we could do.”

The United States will also be discussing Iran with finance ministers from the Group of 7 nations, who are in Washington this week. Those talks will be centered on how to coordinate sanctions to cut off Iran’s supply of military components for weapons like the Shahed drones that it deployed against Israel, according to the Treasury official.

The United States will also be talking with other countries, including China, about the need to stop supplying Iran with weapons or technology that it has been using to destabilize the Middle East.

Yellen noted that since the attack by Hamas on Israel on Oct. 7, the United States has targeted Iran with more than 100 sanctions intended to debilitate its procurement networks for ballistic missiles and the terrorist groups that it finances.

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