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US sanctions 5 top Iranian officials ahead of elections

US sanctions 5 top Iranian officials ahead of elections
Officials designated for barring candidates ahead of nationwide parliamentary polls

By Michael Hernandez

WASHINGTON (AA) - The U.S. on Thursday designated five members of Iran's Guardian Council, including Secretary Ahmad Jannati, over accusations that they are impeding fair elections in the country.

In addition to Jannati, the U.S. is also sanctioning the council's senior member, Mohammad Yazdi, and three members of the council's Central Committee for Election Supervision.

Yazdi served on the supervisory committee for Iran's pending presidential and midterm elections, according to the Treasury Department.

Iran's Guardian Council is responsible for disqualifying electoral candidates from competing in elections, effectively "blocking candidates that do not mirror" Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei's "radical views," the department charged.

“The Trump Administration will not tolerate the manipulation of elections to favor the regime’s malign agenda, and this action exposes those senior regime officials responsible for preventing the Iranian people from freely choosing their leaders,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement. “The United States will continue to support the democratic aspirations of Iranians.”

As a result of Thursday's actions any assets the individuals possess subject to U.S. jurisdiction have been frozen, and U.S. individuals are generally prohibited from conducting transactions with them.

source: News Feed
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