U.S. unveils new sanctions targeting Iran's drone program following Israel attack

Unidentified men are carrying a model of Iran’s first-ever hypersonic missile, Fattah, past a mosque during a gathering to celebrate the IRGC UAV and missile attack against Israel, in Tehran, Iran, on April 15, 2024. 

Morteza Nikoubazl | Nurphoto | Getty Images

The Biden administration on Thursday announced new sanctions targeting Iran’s drone program for its recent attack on Israel.

The sanctions target 16 individuals and two entities involved in Tehran’s drone production. Companies involved in the country’s steel industry and providing vehicles to Iran’s military were also targeted.

“Today, in coordination with the United Kingdom and in consultation with partners and allies, we are taking swift and decisive action to respond to Iran’s unprecedented attack on Israel,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement.

“We’re using Treasury’s economic tools to degrade and disrupt key aspects of Iran’s malign activity, including its [unmanned aerial vehicle] program and the revenue the regime generates to support its terrorism,” Yellen added.

The move comes as Israel weighs how to respond to the attack last weekend, which Iran launched in retaliation for an Israeli strike on an Iranian consulate in Syria earlier this month.

Executives at an Iranian-based company that manufactured engines used in the attack are among the individuals sanctioned. Several members of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force were also targeted for their roles in drone testing and development.

All of the sanctioned individuals’ property in the United States will be frozen. Entities in which the individuals have at least a 50% stake will also be blocked.

Five companies that provide materials to Khuzestan Steel Company, one of Iran’s largest steel producers, were also sanctioned. KSC was previously targeted by sanctions and its sales bring in billions of dollars in revenue for Iran’s government.

“Let it be clear to all those who enable or support Iran’s attacks: The United States is committed to Israel’s security. We are committed to the security of our personnel and partners in the region. And we will not hesitate to take all necessary action to hold you accountable,” President Joe Biden said in a statement Thursday.

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