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President Trump on Iran

August 3, 2018
Updated: October 30, 2018
Donald Trump’s election produced dramatic change in U.S. policy starting in 2017. Since taking office, his administration has taken a tough stance on the Islamic Republic. In his first address to the U.N. General Assembly, he called Iran's government a “murderous regime” and “a corrupt dictatorship…

Secretary Mattis on Iran

August 2, 2018
Secretary of Defense James Mattis is a major player in the formation of U.S. policy on Iran. He has repeatedly criticized the Islamic Republic for supporting militant groups across the Middle East and meddling in other countries’ affairs. “Iran has simply got to find that it's got a better path…

Trump Willing to Meet with Iran Leaders

July 30, 2018
Updated: July 31, 2018
On July 30, President Donald Trump said he was willing to meet with Iranian leaders anytime with no preconditions. “If we could work something out that’s meaningful, not the waste of paper that the other [Iran nuclear] deal was, I would certainly be willing to meet,” he said at a joint press…

Senators Urge Europe to Comply with US Sanctions

July 27, 2018
Senator CruzTen Republican senators, led by Ted Cruz (R-TX), sent a letter to the British, French and German ambassadors in Washington urging their countries to comply with U.S. sanctions and to deepen Transatlantic cooperation against Iran. “First, these statutes align with your governments’…

State Department Official on Iran, Weapons of Mass Destruction

July 27, 2018
On July 27, Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control, Verification, and Compliance Yleem Poblete argued that 2015 Iran nuclear deal “was flawed at both the technical and political levels, and at the practical level.” In remarks about Syrian and Iranian compliance with the Nuclear Non-…

Religious Freedom Ministerial Statement on Iran

July 26, 2018
Updated: July 30, 2018
On July 24-26, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo hosted the Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom in Washington. Foreign ministers, international organization representatives, religious leaders, civil society leaders, and other stakeholders gathered to promote religious freedom and discuss ways to…

State Department on US Policy After the Nuclear Deal

July 25, 2018
On July 25, Assistant Secretary for International Security and Nonproliferation Dr. Christopher Ford said the United States is fully invested in achieving a “comprehensive new deal” with Iran that would address issues beyond its nuclear program. “Normal nations do not engage in prolonged proxy wars…

Pompeo Blasts Iranian Leaders for Corruption

July 23, 2018
On July 22, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo compared Iran’s leaders to mafia bosses who “line their pockets” with wealth while the average person “cries out for jobs, reform, and opportunity.” In a speech at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, Pompeo criticized Iran’s government for human rights…

Rouhani and Trump Trade Barbs

July 23, 2018
Updated: July 26, 2018
On July 22, President Hassan Rouhani warned President Donald Trump against taking hostile actions toward Iran. “Don’t play with the lion’s tail; you will regret it,” Rouhani said at a meeting of Iranian diplomats. The Islamic Republic’s “enemies must understand well that war with Iran is the mother…

Iran Sues United States Over Sanctions

July 18, 2018
Updated: September 6, 2018
On July 16, Iran filed a lawsuit against the United States at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over the reimposition of U.S. sanctions. Iran alleged that the United States violated a treaty signed in 1955, more than two decades before the Islamic Revolution and the subsequent souring of…

NATO Concerned by Iran’s Missiles, Support for Terror

July 13, 2018
On July 11-12, representatives from the 29 member nations of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) met in Brussels to discuss collective defense, crisis management, and modernizing the alliance. The joint declaration from the summit expressed concern over Iran’s ballistic missile program…

Pompeo on Iran in Syria

July 10, 2018
On July 10, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the United States will not tolerate Iran’s presence in Syria. “There’s no reason to have military forces on the ground there. And we’re going to undertake, along with our partners, a comprehensive program to diminish that activity,” he told The…

US Sanctions Bahrain-based Group

July 10, 2018
On July 10, the U.S. State Department designated al Ashtar Brigades (AAB), an Iran-backed group committed to overthrowing Bahrain’s government, as a Foreign Terrorist Organization. As a result, the all of AAB’s property and interests in property subject to U.S. jurisdiction were blocked. “From…

US Sanctions Mahan Air Sales Agent

July 9, 2018
On July 9, the U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned Mahan Travel and Tourism Sdn Bhd, a Malaysia-based sales agent that worked for, or on behalf of, Mahan Air, a blacklisted airline. “Mahan Air is the airline of choice for the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force, facilitating its support to…

Iran, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad

July 9, 2018
Iran supports groups such as Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) for both geostrategic and ideological reasons. Geo-strategically, Tehran aids, arms and funds the two groups to expand its regional influence. Ideologically, Iran views Israel as a usurper of Muslim lands and a threat to Islam.…

Military Rivals: Iran and Saudi Arabia

July 6, 2018
Saudi Arabia and Iran are rival Gulf powers that have long competed for influence in the Middle East. They have starkly different capabilities in manpower and materiel. Both have invested heavily in building modern militaries, partly because of their rivalry, even though neither seeks direct…

Financial Watchdog Gives Iran Time to Complete Reforms

July 2, 2018
On June 29, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) gave Iran additional time to implement reforms to reduce money laundering and terrorist financing risk. Tehran has until October 2018 or it could face consequences that would deter foreign investment. FATF is a Paris-based group that monitors money…

State Department Update on Iran Policy, Sanctions

July 2, 2018
Teams from the State Department and Treasury have visited 13 European and Asian countries to warn governments and the private sector of the risks of continuing to do business with Iran, Director of Policy Planning Brian Hook said on July 2. “We have been clear with countries and companies around…

Exiting the Deal Part 10: Economic Impact

June 28, 2018
Updated: August 8, 2018
President Trump’s announcement on May 8 — to withdraw from the 2015 nuclear deal and reimpose sanctions — began to isolate Iran again. “We’re going to deny them the benefit of the economic wealth that has been created and put real pressure, so that they’ll stop the full scale of the sponsorship of…

U.S. Treasury Updates Iran Sanctions Regulations

June 27, 2018
On June 27, the U.S. Treasury issued updated guidance on Iran sanctions related to the U.S. withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal. The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) revoked two general licenses, including the one that had allowed the export of commercial passenger aircraft and related…

US Report on Human Trafficking in Iran

June 27, 2018
For the eighth consecutive year, the State Department reported that Iran’s government “does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so.” The Islamic Republic was rated a tier three country, the lowest ranking issued in the…

U.S. Urges Countries to Cut Iranian Oil Imports

June 26, 2018
Updated: July 2, 2018
On June 26, a senior State Department official said the United States was asking countries to cut their oil imports from Iran to “zero” by November 4. “I’ve been in Europe and Asia garnering support for our Iran strategy,” the official said. “We’re going to isolate streams of Iranian funding and…

Tehran Protests, Government Responds

June 26, 2018
Updated: June 28, 2018
On June 26, President Hassan Rouhani accused the United States of waging a “psychological, economic and political war” against Iran. “The U.S. cannot defeat our nation, our enemies are not able to get us to their knees,” he said at an annual conference organized by the Judiciary. He blamed “foreign…

Zarif Responds to Pompeo’s Demands

June 21, 2018
On June 21, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif criticized President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Pompeo for making what he called “baseless and provocative allegations” against Iran. “Pompeo, in a baseless and insulting statement, issued a number of demands of and threats against…

U.N. Report on Security Council Resolution 2231

June 14, 2018
On June 12, U.N. Secretary General António Guterres released the fifth report on the implementation of Security Council Resolution 2231, which endorsed the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. “Notwithstanding the continued adherence by the Islamic Republic of Iran to its nuclear-related commitments, the…

Part 1: Iran and South Asia—Afghanistan

June 12, 2018
As neighbors with a 585-mile frontier, Iran and Afghanistan have connections spanning centuries. Relations were formally established in 1935 when both countries were ruled by monarchies. Since 1979—the year of Iran’s revolution and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan—relations between Tehran and…

State Department: US Policy After the Nuclear Deal

June 11, 2018
On June 11, Assistant Secretary for International Security and Nonproliferation Dr. Christopher Ashley Ford emphasized U.S. willingness to “negotiate a new and better deal” on Iran’s nuclear program. “Clearly, what is needed is a solution that restricts Iran’s capabilities in such a way that…

Trump: Iran is Now “Different”

June 7, 2018
Updated: June 12, 2018
On June 7, President Donald Trump said Iran “is a different place” than it was two months ago. “And we'll see what happens. And maybe, ultimately, something will happen with Iran.” He made the cryptic comment amid remarks largely about North Korea before a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister…

Europe Requests Exemptions from US Sanctions

June 6, 2018
European officials have requested exemptions from U.S. sanctions for European companies that have been doing business with Iran since the nuclear deal was implemented in January 2016. In a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, the officials said they…

Iran Prepares to Boost Uranium Enrichment

June 6, 2018
On June 4, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei directed the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) to increase its uranium enrichment capacity. “The West's dream regarding the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) will not come true, and the Iranian nation and government will not tolerate…