President Trump signed an Executive Order Monday morning containing what he described as “hard-hitting” sanctions against the Iranian regime, intended to cut off the flow of money to the Supreme Leader and his close allies.
President Trump has just signed an executive order to deny Iran's Supreme Leader and his associates access to key financial resources and support. pic.twitter.com/14qE9iUe61
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) June 24, 2019
In his comments, Trump said the sanctions had been in the works for quite some time, but that they could also be taken as a response to “aggressive behaviors.”
“Today’s actions follow a series of aggressive behaviors by the Iranian regime in recent weeks, including shooting down of US drones…and many other things. We know of other things that were done also which were not good and not appropriate.
“The Supreme Leader of Iran is one who ultimately is responsible for the hostile conduct of the regime. He’s respected within his country. His office oversees the regime’s most brutal instruments, including the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.
“Sanctions imposed by the executive order that I’m about to sign will deny the Supreme Leader, the Supreme Leader’s office, and those closely affiliated with him and the office access to key financial resources and support. The assets of Ayatollah Khameini and his office will not be spared from the sanctions.
“These measures represent a strong and proportionate response to Iran’s increasingly provocative actions. We will continue to increase pressure on Tehran until the regime abandons its dangerous activities and its aspirations, including the pursuit of nuclear weapons, increased enrichment of uranium, development of ballistic missiles, engagement in and support for terrorism, fueling of foreign conflicts, and belligerent acts directed at the United States and its allies.
“The agreement that was signed was a disaster. It was not doing what it was supposed to do. Many bad things were taking place. And most importantly, it was so short-term that within a very short number of years they would be able to make nuclear weapons, and that’s unacceptable.
“Never can Iran have a nuclear weapon.
“Also included in this is, we want the stoppage immediately of their sponsoring of terrorism. They sponsor terrorism at a level that nobody’s ever seen before, and that’s been over the last number of years. And they’ve taken all of that money that was given to them by the past administration and much of that was given out to terrorist organizations.
“America is a peace-loving nation. We do not seek conflict with Iran or any other country. I look forward to the day when sanctions can be finally lifted and Iran can become a peaceful, prosperous, and productive nation.
“We cannot ever let Iran have a nuclear weapon, and it won’t happen. Secondly, and very importantly, we don’t want money going out to sponsor terror, and they are the number one sponsor of terror anywhere in the world.
“I think a lot of restraint has been shown by us…but that doesn’t mean we’re going to show it in the future.”
Shortly after the Executive Order was signed, the office of Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin issued a statement announcing five Iranian military commanders who had been designated pursuant to the Executive Order and whose “property and interests in property [in the United States]…must be blocked and reported to OFAC.”
— Joyce Karam (@Joyce_Karam) June 24, 2019