March 8, 2021

USA calls on banks around the world to act against Iran's "illicit" funds

USA calls on banks around the world to act against Iran's "illicit" funds



The US government today called on banks around the world to act on the arrival of "illicit" funds from Iran, a country that has restricted its access to the financial system by Washington sanctions.

The Financial Crimes Network (FinCEN) of the US Treasury Department today issued a special notice seeking to ask financial institutions to detect Iranian transactions and report them to US authorities.

The official communication sent to the banks details the "wide range of deceptive practices" used by the Islamic Republic to access the financial system, a senior US official explained today. in a telephone press conference.

In particular, according to that source, Iran tries to evade US restrictions with false companies, exchange houses and officials of the Iranian Government.

In addition, members of the Revolutionary Guard, the largest military corps in Iran, as well as officials of the "highest level" of the Iranian Central Bank are allegedly involved.

A new round of US sanctions will enter into force in early November. These include prohibitions on financial transactions with the Central Bank of Iran and the sale of oil, one of the country's main sources of foreign currency.

US President Donald Trump announced his departure from the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran in May and, since then, has progressively reintroduced the sanctions that Washington had lifted in Tehran as a result of that agreement.

Today's decision could affect European banks that make transactions with Iran, as well as institutions in Iraq or Turkey, which have business with that country.

In May, the US Treasury Department It has already imposed sanctions on an Iraq-based bank, Al Bilad Islamic Bank, for allegedly supporting Iran's operations with the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah.

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