US planning sanctions over missile test against Iran: Reports

US sanction against Iran

WASHINGTON, Feb 3: A day after the Trump administration put Iran “on notice” for its “destabilising behaviour” in the region, multiple media reports said the US is planning to impose sanctions against Tehran.

The reports quoting unnamed senior administration officials came amid an increasing demand in this regard from US Senators even as the Trump administration called a meeting of the UN Security Council on Iran’s ballistic missile tests.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the White House is expected to impose fresh sanctions on dozens of Iranian entities for their alleged role in missile development and terrorism related activities.

The daily said Trump’s National Security Council has drafted a list of around 25 Iranian entities that will be targeted, those people said. Trump is expected to sign executive orders authorising the penalties, the daily said.

CNN also reported on similar lines in its evening news bulletin.

The White House did not confirm the authenticity of the reports.

Meanwhile a group of 20 top Senators urged US President Donald Trump to impose fresh sanctions against Iran.

“We look forward to supporting your administration’s efforts to hold Iran accountable, and note the positive step taken by the United States calling for an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council. It is imperative that the United States lead the international community in enforcing UN Security Council Resolution 2231,” said the lawmakers led by Senator Bob Corker, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and its Ranking Member Senator Ben Cardin

The Senators wrote that they are concerned by reports that Iran conducted a ballistic missile test on January 29, 2017.

“If it is confirmed that Iran tested a ballistic missile capable of delivering a nuclear weapon, Iran will have again violated both the letter and spirit of its obligations under UN Security Council Resolution 2231 (2015) not to undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such ballistic missile technology,” the letter said.

Earlier in the day, the White House did not comment on the news reports.

“I think General Flynn was really clear yesterday, that Iran has violated the joint resolution; that Iran’s additional hostile actions that it took against our Navy vessel are ones that we are very clear are not going to sit by and take,” White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters.

“I think that we will have further updates for you on those additional actions. But clearly, we wanted to make sure that Iran understood that they are on notice this is not going unresponded to,” he said in response to a question.PTI