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U.S. imposes sanctions on Iran's foreign minister - Treasury statement

U.S. imposes sanctions on Iran's foreign minister - Treasury statement
FILE PHOTO: Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (not pictured) and his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif attend a news conference in Moscow, Russia May 8, 2019. REUTERS/Evgenia Novozhenina -
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Evgenia Novozhenina(Reuters)
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WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States on Wednesday imposed sanctions on Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control said on its website.

The Treasury Department said it was imposing sanctions on Zarif for acting on behalf of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

“Javad Zarif implements the reckless agenda of Iran’s Supreme Leader, and is the regime’s primary spokesperson around the world,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement.

Tensions have risen between the United States and Iran following U.S. President Donald Trump’s withdrawal last year from a 2015 international nuclear accord with Tehran. Fears of a direct U.S.-Iranian conflict have risen since May with several attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf, Iran’s downing of a U.S. surveillance drone, and a plan for U.S. air strikes on Iran last month that Trump called off at the last minute.

(Reporting by Eric Beech; editing by Grant McCool)

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