Iran responds back to the new US sanctions against Tehran

Iran responds back to the new US sanctions against Tehran
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TEHRAN - Iran responded to the latest round of US sanctions against Tehran and said that the move showed that the US was running out of options.

The US already maintains sweeping sanctions on Iran including on its central bank, with anyone who deals with it subject to prosecution, due to Tehran's alleged nuclear programme.

But the new sanctions on Friday were imposed for the additional reason of “terrorism”, Treasury said, adding that Iran 's central bank had provided “billions of dollars” to two groups blacklisted by the US .

“Treasury's action targets a crucial funding mechanism that the Iranian regime uses to support its terrorist network, including the Qods Force, Hezbollah and other militants that spread terror and destabilise the region,” said US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

The Qods Force conducts international operations for Iran 's elite Revolutionary Guards, while Hezbollah, the Shia militant group and political party in Lebanon, is among Iran 's closest regional partners.

Iran responded that the move showed that the US was running out of options.

Washington also imposed sanctions on Iran 's sovereign wealth fund, whose board of trustees includes President Hassan Rouhani, as well as Etemad Tejarate Pars, a company that the Treasury Department said had sent money internationally on behalf of Iran 's defence ministry.

Trump recently said that he hopes for talks with Rouhani, who responded that Trump must first ease sanctions.

Last year Trump pulled out of a nuclear accord with Iran negotiated under former president Barack Obama, sending tensions soaring as he tried to stop all countries from buying Iran 's oil. -APP/AFP

Middle East