US tightens sanctions on Iran after attack on Israel

The sanctions aim to limit and degrade Tehran's military capabilities

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The US administration is preparing to impose new sanctions on Iran following its attack on Israel over the weekend, the White House announced on Tuesday, noting that it "expects" its allies to do the same soon.

"In the coming days, the United States will proceed with the imposition of new sanctions targeting Iran, including its programs" for the development of "drones and missiles", the "Revolutionary Guards and the Ministry of Defense", announced in a press release of the American presidency the national security adviser to Joe Biden.

"These new sanctions, as well as other measures, will continue the ongoing pressure on Iran to limit and degrade its military capabilities," Mr. Sullivan continued.

He also made it clear that the US armed forces will increase their level of readiness and preparation to face possible new strikes with drones and missiles from Iran.

"We expect that our allies and partners will follow with their own sanctions," added the statement from the US presidency, which appears to be coordinating steps with Brussels.

Hundreds of penalties

The idea is "to enlarge the pre-existing (sanctions) regime aimed at Iranian drones", noted the head of EU diplomacy, Josep Borrell, after an extraordinary meeting, via video conference, with the 27 Foreign Ministers.

Iran launched hundreds of drones, cruise missiles and ballistic missiles against Israeli territory Saturday night into Sunday in retaliation for the April 1 bombing of the consular annex of the Iranian embassy in Damascus, the capital of Syria, which Israel claims.

Almost all of the missiles and drones were destroyed before they hit Israeli territory. It was Iran's first direct attack on Israel.

The Israeli army declared yesterday Tuesday that Iran will not come out "unscathed" after this unprecedented attack.

"Over the past three years, in addition to drone and missile-related sanctions, the US has imposed measures on 600 individuals and entities linked to terrorism and the financing of terrorism by the Iranian regime" and various movements associated with it in the area, noted Jake Sullivan.

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said earlier yesterday that she "expects" new sanctions to be imposed. She also stressed that sanctions against the Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas do not prevent the delivery of humanitarian aid to civilians in the Gaza Strip, promising that her services will "guarantee" that this will not happen.

“In Gaza, the entire population — over two million people — faces acute food insecurity, and most of it has been displaced. It is up to us, who participate in these meetings, to do everything within our power to end this suffering," she noted in her statement ahead of the IMF and World Bank meetings.

Russia's resources

Also, a Treasury official announced Monday, Washington wants to use this week's spring meetings to advance plans to use Russian earmarked funds to equip and rebuild Ukraine.

"We continue to work with our international partners to unlock the earnings of frozen Russian state funds and ensure that Russia pays for the damage it has caused," Ms Yellen said.

"The G7 leaders asked us to present them with a series of options during their meeting in June," he recalled, noting that he had already held talks on the issue and hoped to "continue" them today in Washington.

Options range from "seizing" Russian assets to "using them as collateral," Yellen said, referring to $285 billion worth of resources that have been pledged.