U.S. puts sanctions on Zarif
Washington imposed sanctions on Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif yesterday.
"Javad Zarif implements the reckless agenda of Iran’s Supreme Leader, and is the regime’s primary spokesperson around the world. The United States is sending a clear message to the Iranian regime that its recent behavior is completely unacceptable," Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement.
The sanctions against Zarif would block any property or interests he has in the United States, but the Iranian foreign minister said he had none.
"The US’ reason for designating me is that I am Iran’s ‘primary spokesperson around the world’," Zarif said on Twitter. "Is the truth really that painful? It has no effect on me or my family, as I have no property or interests outside of Iran. Thank you for considering me such a huge threat to your agenda."
The Trump administration said it would make decisions on whether to grant Zarif travel visas, including for trips to the United Nations, on a case by case basis, holding open the possibility that he might attend the annual U.N. General Assembly in September, Reuters reported.
If Zarif received such a visa, that would allow direct or indirect U.S. contacts with him during that gathering, which brings most of the world’s leaders to New York and has been the venue for previous U.S.-Iranian contacts.