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US sanctions members of Iran’s IRGC, alleged affiliates

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
The Treasury Department is pictured in Washington, US, April 25, 2021. (Photo by Reuters)

The United States has imposed new sanctions on members of Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) as well as individuals and entities it claims to be affiliates of the country's elite military force.

The sanctions announced on Thursday targeted two senior officials of the IRGC's Intelligence Organization as well as three individuals based in Iran and Turkey and a Turkish company which the US Treasury claimed were all linked to the IRGC.

The sanctions were claimed to be a response to IRGC’s involvement in external lethal operations against civilians, including journalists.

The IRGC, which is an integral part of the Iranian military, has been blacklisted in its entirety by the US.

However, Washington announced sanctions on members of the military force from time to time to increase pressure on the force.

Iran has rejected allegations against the IRGC as futile attempts to undermine the rise and prominence of the force in Iran and in the region.

The US sanctions announced on Thursday targeted IRGC’s Intelligence Organization's chief Reza Seraj as well as Rouhallah Bazghandi, the former chief of the Organization's counterespionage department.

Turkish-based airline, Rey Havacilik Ithalat Ihracat Sanayi Ve, was also placed under sanctions because of what the Treasury said was the company’s assistance to IRGC Quds Force's covert operations.

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