The US and six Gulf nations announced sanctions Wednesday (October 30th) on 25 entities associated with Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and Lebanon's Hizbullah, in a move to tighten controls on both group's finances.
The sanctions were set by the Riyadh-based Terrorist Financing Targeting Centre (TFTC), a two-year-old group that includes Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the UAE, in addition to the US.
The TFTC was created in May 2017 to expand and strengthen the co-operation amongst its member states to counter the financing of terrorism.
It "co-ordinates disruptive actions, shares financial intelligence information, and builds member state capacity to target activities posing national security threats to TFTC members", said US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin in a statement.
The sanctions targeted companies supporting the Basij Resistance Force, a subordinate group of the IRGC, that the Treasury said are used "to oppress domestic opposition with brutal displays of violence" and supply fighters to regional conflicts.
Among the 25 was Iranian Bank Mellat and mining, manufacturing and investment firms that allegedly support the Basij.
Four of those listed were individuals running Hizbullah's operations in Iraq, the Treasury said.
All 25 were named in US Treasury sanctions announced in 2018.
"The TFTC's co-ordinated disruption of the financial networks used by the Iranian regime to fund terrorism is a powerful demonstration of Gulf unity," said Mnuchin, who addressed a business forum in Riyadh on Wednesday.
"This action demonstrates the unified position of the Gulf nations and the US that Iran will not be allowed to escalate its malign activity in the region," he said.