Trump administration targets Iran`s financial sector, sanctions major banks

Sunday, 11 Oct, 2020

The Iranian central bank governor, Hemmati, said the USA sanctions have created barriers for importing medicine and food to Iran.

Striking a defiant tone amid the latest batch of penalties, Zarif vowed that country would not cede to U.S. demands.

"Iranians WILL survive this latest of cruelties", he wrote.

"Conspiring to starve a population is a crime against humanity", said Zarif.

The U.S. injunctions levied by Trump have targeted all things starting from oil deals to transport and financial trades, and while they left food off the hook, medicine and other benevolent supplies, many foreign banks are at present dissuaded from doing commerce with the Islamic Republic - along with philanthropic deal.

The newest sanctions, announced by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, target 18 Iranian banks that had not yet been hit by previous USA penalties. That would not only affect banks, but also remittance processors, money-changers and the informal transfer system used frequently in the Muslim world known as hawala.

Zarif on Thursday reacted angrily to the latest designations by the US, calling them a "crime against humanity" at a time of global crisis.

Analysts said the secondary sanctions may further deter European and other foreign banks from working with Iran, even for permitted humanitarian transactions.

The administration effectively cut the regime off from the worldwide financial system with an exception for humanitarian purposes, in accordance with an executive order that U.S. President Donald Trump signed in January authorizing America to enact sanctions on Iran's economy.

This article has been adapted from its original source. The United Kingdom, France and Germany remain party to the Iran nuclear agreement that the Trump administration withdrew from in 2018.

"They won't bring the Iranian government to its knees but will hurt ordinary people, encourage more smuggling and in the long run, undermine dollar-based sanctions", she argued.

The steps, which were announced by the Treasury Department in a news release, hit 18 banks that have so far avoided previous US sanctions.

The blacklisting has been opposed by European nations because it will open up their biggest banks and and other companies to US penalties for conducting business with Iran that had previously been allowed.

The US says it is seeking to choke off Iran's access to funds to pursue what it regards as aggressive activities. However, Iran hawks in Congress and outside the government have long sought the cut-off.