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Iran Looks to Prosecute U.S. ‘Thugs’ Over Latest Financial Sanctions

Iran Looks to Prosecute U.S. ‘Thugs’ Over Latest Financial Sanctions

Iranian judges have said they plan to set up a special court to prosecute American officials over Washington, D.C.’s sanctions campaign against Tehran, in what amounts to a symbolic move showing Iranian fury over what the regime has termed “economic terrorism.”



A woman walks past a mural painted on the outer walls of the former U.S. embassy in the Iranian capital Tehran, on September 29, 2020.


© ATTA KENARE/AFP via Getty Images/Getty
A woman walks past a mural painted on the outer walls of the former U.S. embassy in the Iranian capital Tehran, on September 29, 2020.

Iranian deputy judiciary chief Ali Baqeri told Iranian media Monday that the judiciary will set up a new branch to prosecute supporters of U.S sanctions, the Fars News Agency reported.

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Baqeri’s proposal was welcomed by judiciary chief Seyed Ebrahim Rayeesi, who said the U.S. decision to impose further sanctions “makes us more determined to remain committed to our positions and measures against the hegemonic system.”

Baqeri described the latest round of sanctions as a crime against humanity and said the U.S. administration had a “madness for crime” against Iran. Baqeri said the cases could be heard by national and local Iranian courts, which means any prosecution would carry no weight internationally and be a purely symbolic measure.

The U.S. announced last week that it would blacklist 18 Iranian banks that had previously escaped some American sanctions. The move will effectively cut Tehran off from the global financial market as President Donald Trump’s administration seeks to cripple the regime ahead of November’s presidential election.

Iranian officials reacted furiously, warning that the measures would prevent the country from accessing much needed humanitarian and medical supplies. The U.S. has repeatedly stressed that the sanctions have loopholes for humanitarian and medical aid. But Tehran says sanctioning banks indirectly limits aid due to the targeted institutions’ role in facilitating imports.

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Iran, North Korea had an abysmal 2020 – analysis

Iran, North Korea had an abysmal 2020 – analysis

Parades, missiles and confetti look good for photos, but even with two months left on the clock, it is clear that both Iran and North Korea had a truly abysmal 2020.Pyongyang and Tehran have both lost ground in their respective standoffs with the US, and Israeli security is marginally better for the time being because of this.  A decision by Kim Jong-un, North Korea’s supreme leader, to display his potentially largest Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) ever in a parade this past weekend does nothing to change that.There are two key takeaways from the parade for North Korea-US issues and one for Iran-US-Israel issues. They all ultimately highlight North Korea’s and Iran’s relative weakness at the moment.One is that presuming Pyongyang already had the ability to strike the US with a nuclear ICBM since 2017, it may now be able to fire certain ICBMs with multiple warhead delivery vehicles.That means that if the US hoped to use its THAAD and other anti-missile capabilities to shoot down such an attack from the North, it might now be harder to do so against multiple nuclear warhead attacks at the same time.But in a sense, even this is not new, since Kim has had an estimated arsenal of dozens of nuclear weapons since 2017.That means the first takeaway is that North Korea has at most a smaller tactical victory. If there would be an all-out war, then rather than North Korea responding to a US strike with one missile and one nuclear weapon, the rogue regime could attack back with a missile loaded with multiple nuclear weapons. Maybe before the weekend, Kim would have had a harder time firing off multiple nuclear weapons in the face of possible US air or drone strikes.A second takeaway
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U.S. imposes new Iran sanctions that may spook European banks

U.S. imposes new Iran sanctions that may spook European banks

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States on Thursday slapped fresh sanctions on Iran’s financial sector, targeting 18 banks in an effort to further choke off Iranian revenues as Washington ramps up pressure on Tehran weeks ahead of the U.S. election.

FILE PHOTO: A staff member removes the Iranian flag from the stage after a group picture with foreign ministers and representatives of the U.S., Iran, China, Russia, Britain, Germany, France and the European Union during the Iran nuclear talks at the Vienna International Center in Vienna, Austria July 14, 2015. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

The move freezes any U.S. assets of those blacklisted and generally bars Americans from dealing with them, while extending secondary sanctions to those who do business with them. This means foreign banks risk losing access to the U.S. market and financial system.

The Treasury Department said in a statement the prohibitions did not apply to transactions to sell agricultural commodities, food, medicine or medical devices to Iran, saying it understood the Iranian people’s need for humanitarian goods.

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

“It’s like a punch in the face to the Europeans, who have gone out of their way to indicate to the Americans that they view it as being extremely threatening to humanitarian assistance or humanitarian trade going to Iran,” said Elizabeth Rosenberg of the Center for a New American Security think tank.

“They also want … to make it very difficult for any future president to be able to unwind these measures and engage in nuclear diplomacy,” Rosenberg added, alluding to the possibility that Democratic former Vice President Joe Biden could defeat Republican President Donald Trump in the Nov. 3 U.S. election.

Tensions

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