U.S. announces new sanctions against Iran
The Bushehr nuclear power plant in southern Iran. Iran faces new sanctions over its nuclear program.
July 31st, 2012
02:17 PM ET

U.S. announces new sanctions against Iran

President Barack Obama announced new U.S. sanctions targeting Iran's oil Tuesday, warning Tehran that it faces "growing consequences" for refusing to answer international questions about its nuclear program.

The first set of sanctions announced will target the Islamic republic's energy and petrochemical industries, a move designed to "deter Iran from establishing payment mechanisms for the purchase of Iranian oil to circumvent existing sanctions," a White House statement explains.

The statement continues, "Sanctions are also authorized for those who may seek to avoid the impact of these sanctions, including against individuals and entities that provide material support to the National Iranian Oil Company, Naftiran Intertrade Company, or the Central Bank of Iran, or for the purchase or acquisition of U.S. bank notes or precious metals by the government of Iran."

The second set of sanctions will target banks, "a significant step to hold responsible institutions that knowingly enable financial transactions for designated Iranian banks," the statement said.

The Department of Treasury specifically targeted Bank of Kunlun in China and Elaf Islamic Bank in Iraq. The two financial institutions are alleged to have facilitated transactions worth millions of dollars for Iranian banks that are under sanctions because of the country's nuclear proliferation activities, according to the statement.

"By cutting off these financial institutions from the United States, today’s action makes it clear that we will expose any financial institution, no matter where they are located, that allows the increasingly desperate Iranian regime to retain access to the international financial system," the statement says.

The U.S. will continue seeking a diplomatic solution, the statement says, but if Iran keeps defying the international community the U.S. and its partners will work to "impose increasing consequences."

"Since taking office, we have presented the Iranian government with a clear choice: Come in line with your international obligations and rejoin the community of nations, or face growing consequences," the statement says. "With these actions, we are once again reaffirming our commitment to hold the Iranian government accountable for its actions."

Western powers have long alleged that Iran is attempting to build nuclear weapons, while Iran has insisted that its program is solely for peaceful civilian energy purposes.

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Filed under: Energy • Iran • Nuclear • U.S. • World
soundoff (199 Responses)
  1. spocksbrain

    Iran's foreign policy is dependent upon routinely taking hostages from one source or another, then parading them mercliessly in front of the cameras while it spins the story for its own masses as one of "poor peace loving Iran" and the evil Satan. What kind of hostage taking will they endeavor once they have nukes?

    July 31, 2012 at 4:04 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Alex

    China's economy is crumbling anyway. They aren't as poised and confident as they were even a year ago given its own bubble that's soon to burst. The US knows this and knows it has more leverage to squeeze its balls...

    July 31, 2012 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Portland tony

      What's China got to do with This? Hope this was just a typo!

      July 31, 2012 at 4:23 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Floyd

    17 But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ;

    18 How that they told you~~ 'there should be mockers' ~~ in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts.

    Jude 1:17-18 (KJV)

    July 31, 2012 at 4:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dennis

      Yes our Lord did say this. He also said "When Summer is near so will be the second coming of the son of man" In my personal opinion, I believe Summer is getting closer than we think. Like it is written; "I will come like a thief in the night" is another truth spoken by our lord. I think most people will not be ready, but they will still have time, hopefully? You can tell Summer is near by the news paper. Economies crumbling all over the world; America, China, Europe ect. Everyone wanting to kill instead of having peace. Iran almost has nuclear capability. Like I said, Summer is closer than we think?

      July 31, 2012 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Roy Ussery

    Another kick to keep kicking the can down the road.

    July 31, 2012 at 4:25 pm | Report abuse |
  5. HIDE BEHIND

    Iran is taking hostages from what border?
    Iran is being held hostage witin its borders and the cost of ransom is let US/Israel and Euros run your nation and get rid of all your present Islamic leaders.
    You also must follow the economic policys of European and US and allow them to own your industrial and natural resources.
    Iran must become a NATO ally against Russia and China.
    They must also send military to join in any operations US and EURO's initiate.
    Only those who receive US approval can run for public office.
    Once Iran accepts that US military may be based on their soil no crimes commited by americans can be tried in Irans courts.
    If they do not comply all options are open including use of nuclear weapons until they accept.
    Not a lot different than what we used to call unconditional surrender or else continue dying.
    The odd part is Iran has not broken one international law even after U S. has been constantly trying to destroy. that nations sovereignty for over 40 years.
    The acceptance. by US of Israels paranoia that the whole world is out to get them is all the excuse they need.
    Those two bullys have a narcistic need to make rest of world tell them how beautifull they are, or else.

    July 31, 2012 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dennis

      Why can't people leave each other alone, and let people live how they want to, that's freedom! All god wants for us is peace, but there's always someone who wants to destroy someone else. Our God, no matter what you call him, Allah, Jehova, Yawey, should all learn to do what god asks of all of us in every religions book; LOVE ONE ANOTHER, AND GOD!

      July 31, 2012 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Tundrayeti

    If you want to get a better idea of how badly this is hurting Iran – and helping the U.S. – google "Iran's oil market suicide pact".

    July 31, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Cesar The Chorizo Champ Of Chihuahua

    Everything always works out okay for me. I don't think I'm going to worry about this. It will be okay.

    July 31, 2012 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  8. longtooth

    It was, is, and forever shall be, the end of the world.

    July 31, 2012 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Charles

    Weak on conviction and policy? I think not. Do you want gaffes or hard action.

    July 31, 2012 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Tony

    I am sick and tired of the way the USA and its citizens are being manipulated by Israel and this damn stupid GOP. When are we going to wake up and tell this government that no more wars on any country that does not threating us. Every politician will kiss the Isrealis ass for political donations including Romney and his five sons that never put on a US armed forces uniform in their life. They don't mind sending other people's children to die and continue enjoying his swiss and cayman island dollars stashed away. God bless us and free us from this bondage.

    July 31, 2012 at 5:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mickey1313

      I agree with everything, except the whole god bit. We the people of the united states, need to take our country back. Vote out all zionists, end all wars of forgen agression. End all aid to terror states, isreal, egypt, pakistan, ect. It is our tax dollars raised to help this nation, not to push american emperalism on the rest of the world. We must also end outsourcing of jobs and the importing of substandard goods from china and mexico. And anyone expatraiting away to avoid taxes, should have 90% seized.

      August 1, 2012 at 2:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Ancient Texan

      What branch of service did Obama serve in? Or Bill Clinton?

      August 1, 2012 at 9:22 am | Report abuse |
  11. 40yr old virgin male

    I bet anybody 50 grand after this election no matter if it's pres. Obama or Romney America will be in a disasterous war with Iran and other countries it's already written

    July 31, 2012 at 5:46 pm | Report abuse |
  12. 40yr old virgin male

    It's called population control

    July 31, 2012 at 5:48 pm | Report abuse |
  13. saywhat

    Diplomacy and statesmanship butting its head against a sanctions happy Congress.
    Great way to go, starve the people, threaten to attack every other day, drive a country into a corner where it has to come back fighting. And all ends in peace and stability for the world.

    July 31, 2012 at 6:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Purplemate

      @ saywhat, Referencing your last line: "And all ends in peace and stability for the world."
      The last straw with God, being all the big wig dudes collectively saying "we have a achieved peace WITHOUT the *creator* ."

      🙂 That would be called "THE END" for those ruining the earth.
      While in contrast, a big FAT "Hallelujah" from Gods people, or a "FINALLY" !!!!

      July 31, 2012 at 6:48 pm | Report abuse |
  14. saywhat

    Sure @sam, India and Pakistan are now policing the world now being nuclear powers and we poor things have taken a back seat.
    Israel of course polices the world riding piggy back on us. lol
    Iran according to our own, all western and Israeli spy agencies hasn't even decided to built nuclear bombs.
    If it builds a nuclear weapon it might even prove a deterrent in that region.

    July 31, 2012 at 6:52 pm | Report abuse |
  15. saywhat

    @purplemate
    That might well be.

    July 31, 2012 at 6:54 pm | Report abuse |
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