WASHINGTON : The United States imposed more sanctions on Iran on Friday in retaliation for its missile attack on US forces in Iraq this week and vowed to further tighten the screws on the Iranian economy if Tehran continued to engage in what it described as terrorist acts.
The targets of the sanctions included Iran’s manufacturing, mining and textile sectors as well as senior Iranian officials who Washington said were involved in the Jan. 8 attack on military bases housing US troops.
The sanctions were announced by US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin in an appearance at the White House alongside US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
Tensions between Washington and Tehran have spiked since President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew in 2018 from the Iran nuclear deal struck by his predecessor Barack Obama and began reimposing sanctions that were relaxed under the accord.
Fears that the United States and Iran were bracing for war in the Middle East flared over the past week after a U.S. drone strike killed Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani, spurring Iran’s retaliatory strike on the U.S. bases in Iraq.
Although the two sides seem to have stepped back from the brink of armed conflict, Trump vowed on Wednesday to impose the additional sanctions.