Nov. 18 (UPI) — On the one-year anniversary of Tehran’s bloody crackdown on protesters, the Trump administration leveled new sanctions in opposition to Iran whereas defending its sanctions regime as crucial to defending the area and American lives from the Center Japanese nation’s “malign actions.”

The Treasury and the U.S. State Division on Wednesday blacklisted teams and people related to the federal government’s techniques to squelch mass protests that erupted all through the nation in opposition to a hike to gasoline costs in November 2019.

Amnesty Worldwide has mentioned Iranian forces, together with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, killed greater than 300 folks through the November protests, 220 of whom died on Nov. 16 and 17.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo mentioned he designated Brig. Gen. Heidar Abbaszadeh and Col. Reza Papi of the IRGC “for his or her involvement by operation of command accountability, in gross violations of human rights, specifically the flagrant denial of the proper to life in reference to the violent suppression of protests by safety forces in November 2019.” The transfer blocks them and their instant household from entry to america.

The Treasury additionally sanctioned Mahmoud Alavi, Iran’s minister of intelligence and safety, for having performed a central position in committing human rights abuses in opposition to the Iranian folks, together with throughout final winter’s protests.

Ministry of Intelligence and Safety “brokers are accountable for beatings, sexual abuse, extended interrogations and coerced confessions of prisoners, notably political prisoners,” the Treasury mentioned. “MOIS has employed mock executions and types of sexual violence in its interrogations of prisoners, and its brokers have arrested and detained members of the Baha’i faith with out prices.”

The Treasury additionally imposed sanctions in opposition to an Iranian charity linked to the nation’s supreme chief, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and practically a 3rd of its 160 holdings.

Referred to as the Islamic Revolution Mostazafan Basis, the group is ostensibly a charity charged with serving to the poor and oppressed. Nevertheless, the Treasury says its holdings have been “expropriated from the Iranian folks and are utilized by the supreme chief Ali Khamenei to complement his workplace, reward his political allies and persecute the regime’s enemies.”

The sanctions have been imposed in opposition to the inspiration, 50 of its key business subsidiaries and 10 of its main officers.

The State Division described the inspiration in a press release as “a key company of regime oppression and corruption” with lots of its subsidiaries having been confiscated from Iran’s non secular Baha’i and Jewish minority residents.

“The muse is concerned with human rights abusers, these concerned with the regime’s assist for terrorism and organizations concerned within the brutal killings final November,” Pompeo mentioned.

The sanctions are a part of the Trump administration’s most stress marketing campaign to drive Tehran again into negotiations on a brand new nuclear weapons deal after President Donald Trump in 2018 slapped sanctions in opposition to the Center Japanese nation and pulled america out of an Obama-era multination accord geared toward stopping it from gaining an atomic bomb.

Relations between Tehran and Washington have since escalated with Iran retaliating by reneging on its commitments within the Joint Complete Plan of Motion.

In a separate assertion on Wednesday, Pompeo defended his sanctions regime in opposition to Iran as being “terribly efficient,” seemingly arguing for his or her continuity into the administration of President-elect Joe Biden.

“The utmost stress marketing campaign is working, sanctions will proceed and america is not going to hesitate to impose painful penalties on those that have interaction in sanctionable exercise,” he mentioned. “All through the approaching weeks and months, we are going to impose new sanctions on Iran, together with utilizing our nuclear, counterterrorism and human rights authorities, every reflecting the big selection of malign habits that continues to emanate from the Iranian regime.”

Although Trump has but to concede defeat within the normal election and Pompeo has mentioned there will probably be a second Trump time period, the assertion was issued on the identical day Iran indicated it’ll attempt to persuade the incoming Biden administration to rejoin the nuclear pact.

Biden has additionally derided Trump’s Iran coverage and mentioned in an op-ed printed in September by CNN that he would rejoin the accord “if Iran returns to strict compliance.”

Pompeo argued Wednesday that the sanctions have disadvantaged Tehran of tens of billions of {dollars} that would have gone to hold out “its malign actions” and that Iran needs america to re-enter the JCPOA to ensure that sanctions to be lifted “in change of modest nuclear limitations.”

“The regime desperately wants an financial lifeline. For that motive, they make two arguments: sanctions are ineffective and ineffective; or, within the different, when sanctions are efficient they damage solely the Iranian folks and never the regime; both approach they need to be eliminated,” he mentioned. “The regime’s biggest worry is that sanctions will stay.”