Britain and Canada have announced new Iran-related sanctions targeting individuals and entities threatening international peace and those involved in arms supply to Russia.
Britain on Tuesday imposed sanctions on an Iranian drone maker and a range of other foreign businesses, accusing them of supplying Russian forces with weapons and components for use against Ukraine. Canada targeted seven people whom Ottawa accused of being a menace to international security or involved in activities that constitute gross and systemic violations of human rights in Iran.
According to a statement from the Canadian foreign ministry, the sanctioned individuals include senior Iranian officials involved in entities that supply materials to Iran's national Law Enforcement Command or individuals who hold senior positions in state-directed firms that produce lethal combat drones used by Iran-backed forces “to destabilize the region” or that are exported to Russia.
Canada’s package of sanctions – its 13th against the regime since October 2022 – included Ali-Akbar Ahmadian, the new Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council; Brigadier General Abdolkarim Bani-Tarafi, the Chairman of the Iran Aviation Industry Organization; as well as three board members of the company Reza Khaki, Majid Reza Niyazi-Angili, and Vali Arlanizadeh. Fatemeh Haghshenas and Masoumeh Teymouri, board members of Imen Sanat Zaman Fara -- a company that manufactures equipment for security forces – were also sanctioned in this round.
“Today’s sanctions send a clear message to the Iranian regime that Canada will not tolerate its gross and systematic violations of human rights and its ongoing grave breach of international peace and security. We will continue to use all the tools at our disposal to respond to Iran’s egregious actions,” said Canadian Foreign Minister Mélanie Joly.
London’s punitive measures focused more on Moscow’s access to foreign military equipment, blacklisting 25 individuals and businesses in Iran, Turkey, Belarus, Slovakia, Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates, as well as Russia supporting the war in Ukraine.
Iranian drone maker Paravar Pars and seven of its executives -- already under US sanctions since February – who are involved in the research, development and production of UAVs for the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as well as two Turkey-based exporters of microelectronics, Azu International and Turkik Union, were among those targeted by Britain.
A statement by British Foreign Minister James Cleverly described Paravar Pars as “a key regime-linked UAV manufacturer” and accused the Islamic Republic of being “responsible for supplying Russia with the kamikaze drones used to bombard Ukraine.”
Cleverly said on Tuesday, “We are also taking further action to tackle Iran and Belarus’ support for Russia’s military,” highlighting that “The UK has previously imposed sanctions on Belarus for continuing to actively facilitate Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and has called out Iran’s destabilizing role in global security, including through sanctions against Iranian suppliers of the Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) used by Russia to target Ukrainian civilians.”
“There is nowhere for those sustaining Russia’s military machine to hide," he underlined.
The British government has sanctioned over 1,600 individuals and entities since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, but according to Cleverly, the latest round of sanctions marked its biggest ever action on military suppliers in third countries.
"Today's landmark sanctions will further diminish Russia’s arsenal and close the net on supply chains propping up (President) Putin's now struggling defense industry," British foreign minister James Cleverly said.
Britain, the US, the European Union and several other countries have imposed a range of sanctions since last February to punish Russia for its invasion of Ukraine, which Moscow calls a "special military operation".