US sanctions hit Iran Revolutionary Guard currency network

The US Treasury together with the United Arab Emirates announced action to disrupt an alleged “large scale” currency exchange network run by Iran’s powerful Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. (AFP)
Updated 10 May 2018

US sanctions hit Iran Revolutionary Guard currency network

  • The new sanctions on the currency network ban US individuals and entities from doing business with them, aiming to lock them out of global dollar networks.

WASHINGTON: The US Treasury together with the United Arab Emirates announced action to disrupt an alleged “large scale” currency exchange network run by Iran’s powerful Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.
In the first such action since President Donald Trump withdrew from the Iran nuclear accord on Tuesday, the Treasury announced sanctions against six Iranian individuals and three companies tied to the IRGC who were part of the network, which it said handled “hundreds of millions” of dollars in exchange transactions.
The Treasury also singled out Iran’s central bank as “complicit” in the IRGC operation, alleging the bank gave the operation access to funds held in offshore bank accounts.
“The Iranian regime and its Central Bank have abused access to entities in the UAE to acquire US dollars to fund the IRGC-QF’s malign activities, including to fund and arm its regional proxy groups, by concealing the purpose for which the US dollars were acquired,” said Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin.
“We are intent on cutting off IRGC revenue streams wherever their source and whatever their destination,” he said.
The individuals and companies included an alleged IRGC “front company” in Tehran, Jahan Aras Kish, and a Tehran money-changer, Rashed Exchange.
The US government made clear Tuesday when Trump announced the end of US participation in the JCPOA nuclear deal that going ahead, Washington was going to ramp up pressure on the IRGC and the Central Bank of Iran.
The new sanctions on the currency network ban US individuals and entities from doing business with them, aiming to lock them out of global dollar networks.


Iraqi migrant found dead on northern French beach

Updated 39 min 21 sec ago

Iraqi migrant found dead on northern French beach

  • The body of the Iraqi Kurdish youth was discovered by a passerby on a beach in Le Touquet, about 70 kilometers (about 40 miles) south of the port of Calais
  • Over the past year, growing numbers of migrants from Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia have taken to the treacherous waters of the Channel in small fishing boats or inflatable dinghies

LILLE, France: A 17-year-old Iraqi migrant was found dead Monday on a beach in northern France, local authorities said, as the number of migrants attempting to cross the Channel to Britain spirals.
The body of the Iraqi Kurdish youth was discovered by a passerby on a beach in Le Touquet, about 70 kilometers (about 40 miles) south of the port of Calais, long a rallying point for migrants hoping to stow away on a truck or ferry bound for Britain.
Twenty meters from the body, police found a small boat, “with two oars inside and a canister of fuel and a life vest nearby,” the region’s security department told AFP.
A similar boat was found some 450 meters from the scene but it was not clear if the two were linked.
Over the past year, growing numbers of migrants from Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia have taken to the treacherous waters of the Channel in small fishing boats or inflatable dinghies.
Rights groups have linked the crossings to a police crackdown in Calais, which has made it harder for migrants to try climb aboard a passing truck.
On Monday, eight migrants were intercepted on a beach near Calais and taken to a shelter.
Maritime authorities in northern France counted 1,473 migrants who tried to reach Britain’s shores by sea between January and August this year, compared with 586 in all of 2018.
In August, two migrants were found dead in the Channel — an Iranian woman who drowned after falling out of a packed migrant boat and an Iraqi man who was found dead off the Belgian port of Zeebrugge after trying to swim to England.
The Iraqi migrant is believed to have set off from a beach in northern France, with currents dragging him into Belgian waters.