Shutdown hits unit overseeing sanctions on Iran
Many of those who work at the Treasury Department enforcing sanctions on Iran have been furloughed.
October 3rd, 2013
11:24 AM ET

Shutdown hits unit overseeing sanctions on Iran

By Jamie Crawford

As the Obama administration tests the sincerity of Iran's recent diplomatic outreach, many of the people charged with keeping up pressure on the regime are off the job, having been furloughed in the current government shutdown.

A spokesperson from the Treasury Department told CNN the department had to furlough "nearly all its staff" at the Office of Foreign Assets Control, which oversees enforcement of U.S. sanctions.

As a result of the furloughs, the department is currently unable to sustain its core functions of issuing new sanctions against individuals and entities deemed to be assisting the governments of Iran or Syria, as well as terrorist organizations, narcotics cartels, or proliferators of weapons of mass destruction.

The current sanctions regime directed at Iran over its disputed nuclear program has significantly weakened the Iranian economy, and is believed to be the main impetus behind the outreach by new Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.
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Filed under: Iran • Sanctions • Treasury
U.S. sanctions four members of Hezbollah
The Treasury Department sanctioned four members of Hezbollah on Thursday.
August 22nd, 2013
01:19 PM ET

U.S. sanctions four members of Hezbollah

By Jamie Crawford

The United States sanctioned four senior members of Hezbollah on Thursday for their alleged roles in facilitating terrorist activity in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Yemen and other countries.

The Lebanon-based Shiite organization, which is a member of the Lebanese government, has already been branded a terrorist group by the United States.

"Whether ferrying foreign fighters to the front lines of the Syrian civil war or inserting clandestine operatives in Europe, the Middle East, and elsewhere, Hezbollah remains a significant global terrorist threat," said David Cohen, Treasury undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence.

Those sanctioned include Khalil Harb, who once headed a unit dedicated to terror activities in countries surrounding Israel, Treasury said.
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Filed under: Hezbollah • Iran • Lebanon • Sanctions • Treasury
U.S. tightens screws on Iran's economy
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
May 31st, 2013
03:25 PM ET

U.S. tightens screws on Iran's economy

By Jamie Crawford

The United States imposed new sanctions on Iran on Friday in an effort to further squeeze its crippled economy and pressure Tehran into curbing its nuclear ambitions.

The latest Treasury Department action targets the petrochemical industry, Iran's second-highest source of revenue after oil production, which is also under sanctions.

Treasury targeted eight companies under the authority of an executive order signed by President Barack Obama last year to stem the flow of money that can be diverted to Iran's nuclear program.

Western powers believe Iran is aiming to develop a nuclear weapon. Iran says its intentions are peaceful.
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Filed under: Iran • Quds Force • Sanctions • Treasury
U.S. says it has exposed Iranian shipping scheme aided by businessman
The Treasury Department announced sanctions Thursday against a Greek businessman for his alleged dealings with Iranian oil.
March 14th, 2013
07:14 PM ET

U.S. says it has exposed Iranian shipping scheme aided by businessman

By Jamie Crawford

The U.S. Treasury Department on Thursday detailed what it called an "intricate Iranian scheme" helped by a Greek shipping magnate in an effort to avoid oil export sanctions.

Dimitris Cambis established a network of front companies to purchase multiple oil tankers in an elaborate scheme to disguise the origin of Iranian oil, the Treasury Department said.

"Today we are lifting the veil on an intricate Iranian scheme that was designed to evade international oil sanctions," David S. Cohen, Treasury under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said in a written statement. "We will continue to expose deceptive Iranian practices, and to sanction those individuals and entities who participate in these schemes."
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Putting a price on war with Iran
This satellite image made available to AFP/Getty Images on September 26, 2009 by Digitalglobe shows the suspected Iranian nuclear facility of Fordo near the holy Shiite city of Qom, where Iran is has begun enriching uranium to 20 per cent, according to the UN atomic watchdog agency IAEA.
November 15th, 2012
03:52 PM ET

Putting a price on war with Iran

By Jennifer Rizzo

An all-out U.S. war with Iran, including an invasion by American troops, would cost the global economy close to $2 trillion in the first three months and could go as high as $3 trillion, according to a Washington think tank.

A full-scale ground operation to dismantle Iran's nuclear program is unlikely but the scenario is just one of a handful that a group of nine experts, assembled by the Federation of American Scientists, examined to explore how the global economy would be impacted by U.S. action against Iran.

"There had been talks about oil spikes, about what would happen with the Iranian nuclear program, damage to Iran itself but there had been no, at least in the open sources, large-scale looks at what was going to happen globally," said Charles Blair who co-authored the report.
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Filed under: Iran • Military • Sanctions • Think tank • Treasury
U.S. targets Iranian human rights violators
Masked members of Iran's paramilitary Basij militia parade in front the former US embassy in Tehran on November 25, 2011 to mark the national Basij week.
November 8th, 2012
06:25 PM ET

U.S. targets Iranian human rights violators

By Jamie Crawford

The United States sanctioned 17 Iranian individuals and entities for their alleged roles in the Iranian government's human rights abuses and support of terrorism, the Treasury and State departments announced Thursday.

The actions were carried out under the authority of three separate executive orders that had already been put into effect.

In the first set of sanctions, the United States targeted four Iranian individuals and five entities for their roles in censoring or blocking citizen access to the internet and international media - including the jamming of international satellite broadcasts.

Among those targeted is Ali Fazli, deputy commander of the Basij militia, who participated in the brutal crackdown of civilian protestors in the aftermath of the disputed 2009 Iranian presidential election.

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U.S. offers $12 million for Iran-based al Qaeda operatives
Photo: CNN
October 18th, 2012
04:37 PM ET

U.S. offers $12 million for Iran-based al Qaeda operatives

By Jamie Crawford

The United States is offering $12 million for two men described as al Qaeda financiers who are based in Iran and responsible for the movement of money and fighters to support the terror groups operations in the region.

The State Department has authorized a reward of up to $7 million for information leading to the location of Muhsin al-Fadhli, who U.S. officials believe to be the leader of al Qaeda's network in Iran. A similar reward of $5 million was offered for Adel Radi Saqr al-Wahabi al-Harbi, who serves as al-Fadhli's deputy in Iran.

In conjunction with the reward offers, the Treasury Department designated al-Harbi for his leadership role in al Qaeda and froze any assets of his under U.S. jurisdiction. It also prohibited all U.S. persons from conducting any transactions with him.

The move further exposes al Qaeda's "critically important Iran-based funding and facilitation network," said David S. Cohen, Treasury under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, in a written statement. "We will continue targeting this crucial source of al Qaeda's funding and support, as well as highlight Iran's ongoing complicity in this network's operation."
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Treasury sanctions terror facilitators in Pakistan
The Treasury Department announced the sanctions in a statement on Wednesday.
October 17th, 2012
03:15 PM ET

Treasury sanctions terror facilitators in Pakistan

By Jamie Crawford

The United States imposed sanctions on three men who allegedly facilitated Taliban operations and helped another group deemed a terrorist organization, the Treasury Department said on Wednesday.

One of the men was linked to the failed car bomb attack on New York's Times Square in 2010, Treasury said.

The three, all based in Pakistan, were each were targeted for allegedly providing material, logistical, or financial support to a separate group: the Taliban in Afghanistan, Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan, also known as the Pakistani Taliban, and the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan.

"Today's actions are intended to disrupt the activities of three individuals working to carry out violent attacks in Afghanistan and Pakistan that threaten the lives of civilians and military forces," Davis Cohen, Treasury under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said in a statement.
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Filed under: Pakistan • Taliban • Terrorism • Treasury
U.S. targets Hezbollah for Syrian support
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah has overseen the group's efforts to aid the Assad regime the Treasury Department said.
August 10th, 2012
11:43 AM ET

U.S. targets Hezbollah for Syrian support

The U.S. Treasury Department on Friday announced an extension of sanctions against Hezbollah, a Lebanon-based Shiite militant group, for its support of the Syrian government.

Hezbollah, which the United States has long designated a terrorist organization supported by Iran, has provided training, advice and extensive logistical support to President Bashar al-Assad's military campaign against an uprising that began last March, the department reported.

The agency accused the group of directly training Syrian government personnel inside Syria, and facilitating the training of Syrian forces by the Quds Force, an elite unit of Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps.

"Hizballah's extensive support to the Syrian government's violent suppression of the Syrian people exposes the true nature of this terrorist organization and its destabilizing presence in the region," Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David S. Cohen said in a written statement announcing the sanctions.

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Filed under: Assad • Hezbollah • Iran • Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps • Lebanon • Quds Force • Sanctions • Security Brief • Syria • Treasury
August 8th, 2012
02:42 PM ET

Al Qaeda leader designated as global terrorist

By Wesley Bruer

A senior al Qaeda leader who trained militants in Afghanistan and who has close ties to other top members of the group has been designated by the State Department as a "Specially Designated Global Terrorist."

The designation also comes with sanctions against Azaam Abdullah Zureik Al-Maulid, better known as Mansur al-Harbi.

Though the United States is just now turning its attention to al-Harbi, he has long been a wanted man in his home country of Saudi Arabia.

In early 2009, al-Harbi was among the 83 Saudis and two Yemenis named on Saudi Arabia's list of most wanted terrorists for engaging in extremist activities abroad. FULL POST

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Filed under: Al Qaeda • Sanctions • State Department • Terrorism • Treasury
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