President Joe Biden speaks in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House
“Let it be clear to all those who enable or support Iran’s attacks: The United States is committed to Israel’s security,” President Joe Biden said in a statement. Image Credit: AP

Washington: The US imposed fresh sanctions on Iran over its April 13 strike on Israel, targeting 16 people and entities including a company that helped make engines for the type of drones launched in the barrage.

The sanctions also targeted subsidiaries of the Iranian automaker Bahman Group, which the Treasury Department said has supported Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, as well as customers of a steel company that brings in billions of dollars of revenue for Iran every year.

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“Let it be clear to all those who enable or support Iran’s attacks: The United States is committed to Israel’s security,” President Joe Biden said in a statement. “We are committed to the security of our personnel and partners in the region. And we will not hesitate to take all necessary action to hold you accountable.”

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The US and its allies are trying to demonstrate to Iran that there will be consequences for the attack on Israel, which saw Tehran launch some 300 drones and missiles, almost all of which were shot down before they hit their targets. At the same time, allied nations have implored Israel not to retaliate, fearing that a direct strike on Iran could touch off a regional war.

Even so, any impact of the sanctions announced Thursday is likely to be limited. Iran’s drone program, the IRGC and Bahman group have been under sanctions for years, and those restrictions failed to deny Iran funding to advance its production of they types of weapons used in last weekend’s barrage against Israel. The IRGC is also designated a terrorist group, meaning it’s already severed from the US financial system.

Britain also sanctions Tehran 

In coordination with the US Treasury, the UK government announced its own suite of sanctions against Tehran on Thursday, targeting seven individuals and six companies for enabling Iran to continue its "destabilizing regional activity, including its direct attack on Israel."

"The Iranian regime's attack against Israel was a reckless act and a dangerous escalation," British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said, adding that the UK had sanctioned the "ringleaders of the Iranian military and forces responsible for the weekend's attack."

"These sanctions - announced with the US - show we unequivocally condemn this behavior, and they will further limit Iran's ability to destabilize the region," he added.

Alongside its sanctions against Iran's UAV program, the US also targeted five companies providing parts for Iran's steel industry, and an automaker involved in providing "material support" to Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

"Iran's metals sector generates the equivalent of several billion dollars in revenue annually, with the majority coming from steel exports," the Treasury Department said.

"We're using Treasury's economic tools to degrade and disrupt key aspects of Iran's malign activity, including its UAV program and the revenue the regime generates to support its terrorism," US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement.

"We will continue to deploy our sanctions authority to counter Iran with further actions in the days and weeks ahead," she added.