USA and Iran issue tit-for-tat sanctions over missile plan

Bruno Cirelli
Luglio 20, 2017

The Associated Press reported that Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari told Iranian state TV Wednesday that the Guard's missile program is not negotiable.

IRGC commander Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari demanded Wednesday the USA withdraw all of its military bases within 1,000 kilometers (more than 621 miles) of Iran's borders, a distance that encompasses most of the U.S.'s operations in the Middle East and Afghanistan.

Washington should be aware that it will pay dearly for any miscalculations, he went on to say.

In announcing the new sanctions against 18 individuals and entities in Iran, the US State Department said it "remains deeply concerned about Iran's malign activities across the Middle East which undermine regional stability, security, and prosperity".

In June, the US Senate had passed a bill on new sanctions against Iran. It would also apply terrorism-related sanctions to the IRGC and enforces an arms embargo.

That was an apparent reference to Iran's continued pursuit of a ballistic missile program.

On Monday, Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Major General Mohammad Hossein Baqeri cautioned the United States against the "big risk" of imposing terrorism-related sanctions on the IRGC.

The head of Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guard warned the USA that it better move its forces away from his country if Washington imposes new sanctions on his paramilitary group.

On Monday, US President Donald Trump said Iran was complying with the terms of the nuclear deal it signed with world powers in 2015.

Mnuchin said the sanctions would "send a strong signal that the United States can not and will not tolerate Iran's provocative and destabilizing behavior", and stressed that Iran would be pressured to stop both ballistic missile research and deploying the IRGC to destabilize other countries in the region.

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