New Articles

NATO Concerned by Iran’s Missiles, Support for Terror

July 13, 2018
On July 11-12, representatives from the 29 member nations of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) met in Brussels to discuss collective defense, crisis management, and modernizing the alliance. The joint declaration from the summit expressed concern over Iran’s ballistic missile program…

Pompeo on Iran in Syria

July 10, 2018
On July 10, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the United States will not tolerate Iran’s presence in Syria. “There’s no reason to have military forces on the ground there. And we’re going to undertake, along with our partners, a comprehensive program to diminish that activity,” he told The…

US Sanctions Bahrain-based Group

July 10, 2018
On July 10, the U.S. State Department designated al Ashtar Brigades (AAB), an Iran-backed group committed to overthrowing Bahrain’s government, as a Foreign Terrorist Organization. As a result, the all of AAB’s property and interests in property subject to U.S. jurisdiction were blocked. “From…

US Sanctions Mahan Air Sales Agent

July 9, 2018
On July 9, the U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned Mahan Travel and Tourism Sdn Bhd, a Malaysia-based sales agent that worked for, or on behalf of, Mahan Air, a blacklisted airline. “Mahan Air is the airline of choice for the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force, facilitating its support to…

Iran, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad

July 9, 2018
Iran supports groups such as Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) for both geostrategic and ideological reasons. Geo-strategically, Tehran aids, arms and funds the two groups to expand its regional influence. Ideologically, Iran views Israel as a usurper of Muslim lands and a threat to Islam.…

Military Rivals: Iran and Saudi Arabia

July 6, 2018
Saudi Arabia and Iran are rival Gulf powers that have long competed for influence in the Middle East. They have starkly different capabilities in manpower and materiel. Both have invested heavily in building modern militaries, partly because of their rivalry, even though neither seeks direct…

Financial Watchdog Gives Iran Time to Complete Reforms

July 2, 2018
On June 29, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) gave Iran additional time to implement reforms to reduce money laundering and terrorist financing risk. Tehran has until October 2018 or it could face consequences that would deter foreign investment. FATF is a Paris-based group that monitors money…

State Department Update on Iran Policy, Sanctions

July 2, 2018
Teams from the State Department and Treasury have visited 13 European and Asian countries to warn governments and the private sector of the risks of continuing to do business with Iran, Director of Policy Planning Brian Hook said on July 2. “We have been clear with countries and companies around…

Exiting the Deal Part 10: Economic Impact

June 28, 2018
Updated: July 13, 2018
President Trump’s announcement on May 8 — to withdraw from the 2015 nuclear deal and reimpose sanctions — began to isolate Iran again. “We’re going to deny them the benefit of the economic wealth that has been created and put real pressure, so that they’ll stop the full scale of the sponsorship of…

U.S. Treasury Updates Iran Sanctions Regulations

June 27, 2018
On June 27, the U.S. Treasury issued updated guidance on Iran sanctions related to the U.S. withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal. The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) revoked two general licenses, including the one that had allowed the export of commercial passenger aircraft and related…

US Report on Human Trafficking in Iran

June 27, 2018
For the eighth consecutive year, the State Department reported that Iran’s government “does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so.” The Islamic Republic was rated a tier three country, the lowest ranking issued in the…

U.S. Urges Countries to Cut Iranian Oil Imports

June 26, 2018
Updated: July 2, 2018
On June 26, a senior State Department official said the United States was asking countries to cut their oil imports from Iran to “zero” by November 4. “I’ve been in Europe and Asia garnering support for our Iran strategy,” the official said. “We’re going to isolate streams of Iranian funding and…

Tehran Protests, Government Responds

June 26, 2018
Updated: June 28, 2018
On June 26, President Hassan Rouhani accused the United States of waging a “psychological, economic and political war” against Iran. “The U.S. cannot defeat our nation, our enemies are not able to get us to their knees,” he said at an annual conference organized by the Judiciary. He blamed “foreign…

Zarif Responds to Pompeo’s Demands

June 21, 2018
On June 21, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif criticized President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Pompeo for making what he called “baseless and provocative allegations” against Iran. “Pompeo, in a baseless and insulting statement, issued a number of demands of and threats against…

U.N. Report on Security Council Resolution 2231

June 14, 2018
On June 12, U.N. Secretary General António Guterres released the fifth report on the implementation of Security Council Resolution 2231, which endorsed the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. “Notwithstanding the continued adherence by the Islamic Republic of Iran to its nuclear-related commitments, the…

Part 1: Iran and South Asia—Afghanistan

June 12, 2018
As neighbors with a 585-mile frontier, Iran and Afghanistan have connections spanning centuries. Relations were formally established in 1935 when both countries were ruled by monarchies. Since 1979—the year of Iran’s revolution and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan—relations between Tehran and…

State Department: US Policy After the Nuclear Deal

June 11, 2018
On June 11, Assistant Secretary for International Security and Nonproliferation Dr. Christopher Ashley Ford emphasized U.S. willingness to “negotiate a new and better deal” on Iran’s nuclear program. “Clearly, what is needed is a solution that restricts Iran’s capabilities in such a way that…

Trump: Iran is Now “Different”

June 7, 2018
Updated: June 12, 2018
On June 7, President Donald Trump said Iran “is a different place” than it was two months ago. “And we'll see what happens. And maybe, ultimately, something will happen with Iran.” He made the cryptic comment amid remarks largely about North Korea before a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister…

Europe Requests Exemptions from US Sanctions

June 6, 2018
European officials have requested exemptions from U.S. sanctions for European companies that have been doing business with Iran since the nuclear deal was implemented in January 2016. In a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, the officials said they…

Iran Prepares to Boost Uranium Enrichment

June 6, 2018
On June 4, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei directed the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) to increase its uranium enrichment capacity. “The West's dream regarding the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) will not come true, and the Iranian nation and government will not tolerate…

Part 4: Iran's Influence After Iraq's Election

June 5, 2018
As Iraq shapes a government from its May 12 election, the indecisive electoral outcome again will leave Iran in a position to affect both the choice of a prime minister, and the tenor of the underlying administration. How Iran wields that influence is likely to depend on how well the European Union…

US Treasury Official on Iran’s Illicit Finances

June 5, 2018
On June 5, Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Sigal Mandelker described how Iran uses “deceptive tactics including front and shell companies to exploit markets in numerous countries to fund its nefarious activities.” She also cited numerous cases in which the Central Bank of…

Khamenei: Missiles Guarantee Iran’s Security

June 4, 2018
On June 4, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei warned that Iran will “strike back ten-fold” if attacked. He touted Iran’s development of ballistic missiles, saying they guarantee the country’s security. Khamenei also directed Iran’s atomic energy agency to prepare to increase its uranium…

US Sanctions Target Iran's Human Rights Abuses

May 30, 2018
On May 30, the U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned three Iranian entities and six individuals for committing human rights abuses and censorship activities on behalf of Iran's government. “Iran not only exports terrorism and instability across the world, it routinely violates the rights of its own…

US Report: Religious Freedom in Iran

May 29, 2018
Iran’s government continued to imprison, harass, intimidate, and discriminate against people based on religious beliefs in 2017, according to an annual State Department report on religious freedom. Some 90 percent of Iran’s population is Shiite. Religious minorities, such as Sunni Muslims and Sufis…

Pompeo VOA Interview on New Iran Policy

May 25, 2018
On May 24, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo discussed the new U.S. strategy to counter Iran following President Trump's decision to withdrawal from the nuclear deal. "With respect to the use of nuclear material in Iran, just as we have in Saudi Arabia, just as we did with the United Arab Emirates, we…

New US Sanctions Target Iran Airlines

May 24, 2018
On May 24, the Treasury Department designated nine individuals and entities that were procuring "export-controlled, U.S.-origin goods for sanctioned Iranian airlines." The sanctions also targeted procurement networks based in Turkey. "The deceptive practices these airlines employ to illegally…

Khamenei Sets Conditions for Europe to Preserve Nuclear Deal

May 23, 2018
On May 23, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei issued six conditions that must be met by Europe for Iran to remain in the nuclear deal. He demanded that Europe secure “a resolution against the U.S. violation” of U.N. Security Council Resolution 2231, which endorsed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of…

Pompeo Testifies Before Congress on Iran

May 23, 2018
Updated: May 24, 2018
On May 23 and 24, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo testified before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on the State Department Budget for 2019. The hearings came days after Pompeo unveiled a new strategy to counter Iran after the U.S. withdrawal from the…

Iran to Stay in Syria Despite Russian Call to Withdraw

May 23, 2018
On May 17, Russian President Vladimir Putin called for foreign forces to withdraw from Syria at a press conference with Syrian President Bashar al Assad. Russia's envoy to Syria clarified Putin's comments the next day, saying they applied to Turkish, U.S., Iranian, and Hezbollah forces. The Russian…