The US government under President Joe Biden has announced the first sanctions against Iran. Because of human rights violations, two members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard will no longer be allowed to travel to the United States, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced on Tuesday. The two Iranians are said to have mistreated prisoners. The US government will continue to consider all appropriate means “to bring those responsible for mistreatment and human rights violations in Iran to account,” said Blinken.
The State Department in Washington announced on Tuesday that interrogators Ali Hemmatian and Massud Safdari and their immediate relatives would no longer be allowed to enter the United States. They are accused, among other things, of participating in the torture of political prisoners and people arrested during protests in 2019 and 2020. Since April 2019, the United States has classified the Revolutionary Guards as a foreign terrorist organization.
Relations between the US and Iran have been extremely tense since the US withdrew from the international nuclear deal in 2018 under then-President Donald Trump. Biden wants to revive the deal with Iran. In other areas, however, including compliance with human rights, he wants to put pressure on the country.