US targets airlines in latest Iran sanctions move

Fresh sanctions are targeting firms linked to Mahan Air. (Reuters)
Updated 24 May 2018
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US targets airlines in latest Iran sanctions move

WASHINGTON: The United States on Thursday imposed sanctions on several Iranian and Turkish companies and a number of aircraft in a move targeting four Iranian airlines.
The companies targeted were linked to Mahan Air and Meraj Air, the US Treasury Department said in a statement. It also said it was targeting a number of their aircraft, as well as aircraft from Caspian Airlines and Pouya Air.
The United States said the two airlines had ferried weapons, fighters and money to proxies in Syria and Lebanon. Washington also threatened sanctions for others granting landing rights and providing services to the aircraft.
"The deceptive practices these airlines employ to illegally obtain services and US goods is yet another example of the duplicitous ways in which the Iranian regime has operated," US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement.
The sanctions were the latest in the United States' efforts to economically strangle Iran with the hopes of blocking the country's efforts to develop nuclear weapons.
Earlier this month, the United States withdrew from a 2015 nuclear accord that had lifted sanctions on Iran in exchange for curbs to its nuclear program, dismaying US allies.
On Tuesday, the United States imposed sanctions on five Iranians it said had provided Yemen's Houthi movement with weaponry and expertise to launch missiles at cities and oil infrastructure in Saudi Arabia.

 


Paris attacks suspect given conditional release

Updated 25 min 5 sec ago
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Paris attacks suspect given conditional release

  • Ali Oulkadi, who was imprisoned in France, drove Abdeslam across Brussels on November 14, the day after the attacks that killed 130 people
  • Another man suspected of accompanying Abdeslam back to Brussels from Paris — Hamza Attou — has already been released, with a third, Mohamed Amri, still behind bars in France

BRUSSELS: A man suspected of briefly helping top suspect Salah Abdeslam in the immediate aftermath of the Paris attacks of 2015 has been released and placed under judicial supervision in Belgium, prosecutors said Tuesday.
Ali Oulkadi, who was imprisoned in France, drove Abdeslam across Brussels on November 14, the day after the attacks that killed 130 people, Belgian and French prosecutors told AFP.
That was the last trace of Abdeslam who then disappeared to become the world’s most wanted fugitive before his spectacular capture in the Belgian capital four months later.
Abdeslam exonerated Oulkadi to investigators earlier this year, claiming his old friend knew nothing of the terror attacks.
French courts on Monday allowed Oulkadi to return to the Belgian capital where he resided before his arrest at the end of 2015.
Another man suspected of accompanying Abdeslam back to Brussels from Paris — Hamza Attou — has already been released, with a third, Mohamed Amri, still behind bars in France.
Amri and Attou are suspected of accompanying Abdeslam back to Brussels, getting him past three police checks in France before crossing the border into Belgium.