Obama tightens sanctions on Iran

Washington: US President Barack Obama has ordered to tighten sanctions on Iran’s government and central bank because of the country’s suspect nuclear program, freezing all property of the Central Bank of Iran, other Iranian financial institutions and the Iranian government in the United States.

In a letter to Congress, Obama said Iranian banks were hiding transactions to undercut the financial sanctions the United States and other powers have imposed in response to Iran’s nuclear programme.

“I have determined that additional sanctions are warranted, particularly in light of the deceptive practices of the Central Bank of Iran and other Iranian banks to conceal transactions of sanctioned parties,” Obama said in the letter.

He said the expanded powers including powers for foreign branches of American banks – were necessary because of “deficiencies in Iran’s anti-money laundering regime” and “the continuing and unacceptable risk posed to the international financial system by Iran’s activities.”

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