U.S President Donald Trump on Monday signed an executive order with new ‘hard-hitting’ sanctions on Iran specifically targeting Iranian supreme leader, Ali Khamenei.
‘I’ll be signing an executive order imposing hard-hitting sanctions on the supreme leader of Iran on the office of the supreme leader of Iran and many others. Today’s action follows a series of aggressive behaviors by the Iranian regime in recent weeks, including shooting down of U.S. drones,’ Trump said in Oval office.
‘We do not seek conflict with Iran or any other country,’ he added.
‘I think a lot of restraint has been shown by us – a lot of restraint – and that doesn’t mean we’re going to show it in the future. But, I felt that we want to give this a chance, give it a good chance, because I think Iran potentially has a phenomenal future.’
The U.S believes Iran’s supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, is ultimately the one responsible for the hostile conduct of the regime and the escalating tensions between both nations. Ali Khamenei is respected and held so high in Iran.
Trump said the new sanctions ‘will deny the Supreme Leader and the Supreme Leader’s office and those closely affiliated with him and the office access to key financial resources.’
‘My only message is he has the potential to have a great country and quickly. Very quickly. I think they should do that than going along this destructive path. Destructive for everybody. It’s destructive for everybody. We can’t let them have a nuclear weapon. He says he doesn’t want nuclear weapons. It’s a great thing to say. A lot of things have been said over the years and it turns out not so. He said he does not want to have nuclear weapons. If that itself the case, we can do something very quickly,’ the president said.
Steve Mnuchin, U.S Treasury Secretary, told reporters that the administration will ‘lock up literally billion dollars in assets.’
Now along with our existing sanctions authority, we have additional sanctions to go after the supreme leaders’ office and lock up literally billions of dollars more of assets,’ he said while briefing news men shortly after he left the Oval Office, where he had watched Trump sign the new sanctions order.
‘These sanctions are highly, highly-effective in locking up the Iranian economy,’ he said.
Tensions between U.S and Iran quickly escalated Thursday last week when Iran shot down the U.S drone. The incident on Thursday and subsequent escalatory comments were a continuation of many weeks of rising acrimony between the two nations culminating to the new sanctions imposed on Iran, Monday.
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