Pompeo announces new Iran designations and visa restrictions

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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - He referenced the November protests by Iranians across the country's major cities as a unifying moment

Dec 19, 2019

December 19, 2019

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The US issued a new batch of designations and sanctions against Iran on Thursday.

They were announced in a speech by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who said the “appeasement of the regime will not work” and that his country stands with the Iranian people.

Mr Pompeo, speaking from a symposium at the State Department dedicated to exposing Iran’s human rights violations and targeting religious minorities, said the “Iranian people are fed up”.

He referenced the November protests across the country's major cities as a unifying moment for Iranians to regain their dignity. Amnesty International estimated that at least 304 protesters were killed and thousands arrested in the wave of unrest.

In response, Mr Pompeo announced sanctions on two judges involved in the crackdown. A statement by the US Treasury Department identified the judges as Abolghassem Salavati and Mohammad Moghisseh.

It said they ”oversaw the Iranian regime's miscarriage of justice in show trials in which journalists, attorneys, political activists, and members of Iran's ethnic and religious minority groups were penalised for exercising their freedom of expression and assembly and sentenced to lengthy prison terms, lashes, and even execution.” The sanctions apply to their children as well.

But Mr Pompeo also revealed new visa restrictions against current or former Iranian officials who are involved in the crackdown. “Thugs killing people’s children will not be allowed to send their own children to study in the United States of America,” he said.

The US Secretary of State added that “appeasement of the regime will not work” and that Washington remains committed to stand with the Iranian people.

The US government has received, Mr Pompeo said, more than 36,000 pieces of information on Iran's human rights violations since the protests started on November 15.

Updated: December 19, 2019 09:09 PM

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