The European Union (EU) is reportedly planning to impose sanctions on dozens of Iranian individuals amid its efforts to blacklist Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) as a "terrorist organization,” despite Tehran’s stern warning of the consequences of such a hostile measure.
Citing two European diplomats, Reuters said on Thursday the European bloc was to add 37 names to its sanctions list on Monday.
"We will adopt the fourth package of sanctions against Iran on Monday," the officials said.
The 27-nation bloc has been slapping sanctions against Iran over, what it calls, the country's confrontation against the foreign-backed violence and riots that erupted across the Islamic Republic in September after the tragic death in police custody of a young Iranian woman, named Mahsa Amini.
The unfortunate incident was immediately picked up by Western-based media outlets and officials, who -- without providing any convincing evidence -- started claiming that the woman had been "murdered" by police forces.
Iran immediately released the CCTV footage showing the young woman fainting at a police station and being subsequently transferred to a hospital. In the meantime, Iranian authorities conducted an investigation into the incident, concluding that Amini’s death had been caused by an illness, rather than alleged bodily harm.
Last month, Iran's Interior Ministry said the country's enemies had been using the opportunity of Amini's case to wage a hybrid war against the Islamic Republic to weaken its national solidarity and hinder the country's progress.
One of the European diplomats, who were speaking to Reuters, meanwhile, said, "We believe we should already start working on the fifth one (sanction package) to list IRGC as a terrorist organization."
On Wednesday, the European Parliament's members backed an amendment added to an annual foreign policy report, calling for "the EU and its member states to include the IRGC in the EU's terror list."
Tehran has strongly warned Brussels about the consequences of the such hostile measure, saying it would amount to direct and blatantly aggressive intervention in the Islamic Republic's internal affairs.
Also on Thursday, Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi condemned the European drive, saying the potential designation of the Corps as a "terrorist organization," would be a move made out of "desperation."
"This move is out of desperation and it comes after their failed attempts on the streets to deal a blow to Iranian people,” he said, referring to the foreign-backed violence.