US Sanctions Iranian Counterfeiting Ring

November 21, 2017

On November 20, the U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned a wide network of individuals of entities that were helping Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Qods Force “counterfeit currency to support its destabilizing activities.” The U.S. government has accused the Qods Force of meddling in the affairs of Iran’s neighbors and supporting terror. The following is the full text of the Treasury’s press release.

 

IAEA Director General on Iran Nuclear Deal

November 14, 2017

On November 14, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Yukiya Amano said that Iran is abiding by the nuclear deal’s restrictions and that his agency’s verification measures are strong. “IAEA inspectors now spend around 3,000 days in the field in Iran each year, twice as many as in 2013,” he said at the Harvard Kennedy School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Amano gave an overview of the Iran nuclear issue from 2002 to the present and detailed the IAEA’s involvement in verifying the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Lebanese Prime Minister Resigns, Blames Iran

November 8, 2017

On November 4, Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri resigned, blaming Iran and its Lebanese proxy Hezbollah for destabilizing the region. The Arab world would "cut off the hands that wickedly extend to it [Iran]," he warned. Hariri, leader of the Future Movement Party, is the leader of Lebanon’s main Sunni Muslim political bloc and a close ally of Saudi Arabia. It was Hariri’s second visit to the kingdom in less than a week.

Putin Visits Tehran

November 3, 2017

On November 1, Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Iran for the first time since 2015. In a meeting with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Putin voiced support for the nuclear deal and said that Russia objects to “any uniliteral change” to it.

Iranian Leaders on Kurdish Referendum

October 18, 2017

KhameneiOn September 25, the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) in Iraq held a referendum on independence. Nearly 93 percent of 4.5 million voters supported turning the KRG and some disputed areas into an independent state. Iranian leaders were largely critical of the KRG’s decision to hold the vote, saying that it would bring further instability to the war-torn region.

Trump Speech on Iran: Khamenei Responds

October 18, 2017

KhameneiOn October 18, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei condemned President Trump’s policy towards Iran and the nuclear deal as “nonsense.” But he emphasized that Iran will not be the first one to tear up the agreement. Khamenei also expressed frustration with European powers. He urged them to oppose U.S. moves and to avoid interfering with Iran’s defense affairs.