US imposes new sanctions on Iran amid COVID-19 outbreak

TEHRAN, Mar. 27 (MNA) – The United States has imposed new sanctions against 20 companies, officials and individuals in Iran and Iraq, despite growing global pressure on the US to end sanctions on Iran as the country battles the coronavirus pandemic.

The US Treasury Department said in a statement on Thursday the sanctions freeze any US-held assets of those designated and generally bar Americans from doing business with them.

The statement accused those sanctioned of supporting Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), and the IRGC's Quds Force, as well as Iraq's Kata'ib Hezbollah, a pro-government resistance group, and Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq movement, a subdivision of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU).

The US Treasury also accused the people and entities of smuggling weapons to Iraq and Yemen and selling Iranian oil to the Syrian government.

Over the past week, the international community has been making calls on the US to lift the illegal sanctions, which have hampered Tehran’s access to lifesaving medical supplies as the country is trying to contain the coronavirus and help treat the patients.

Meanwhile, Iran has roundly denounced the US claims for sending aid as hypocritical, saying if the US genuinely sought to help , it should lift its sanctions targeting the Islamic Republic.

MNA/PR

News Code 157052

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