New US sanctions not to affect Iran’s airlines: CAO

Tasnim – Spokesman for Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization (CAO) Reza Jafarzadeh shrugged off a recent move by the US government to impose new sanctions on Mahan Air and said such embargoes would have no negative effect on the Islamic Republic’s airlines.

“The US sanctions against Iran and its airlines are not something new and every now and then, a new embargo is imposed on our country,” Jafarzadeh told Tasnim.

The Americans have imposed sanctions on various sectors of Iran, including airlines, he said, adding that given the past experiences of the country, the aviation industry officials have already anticipated such issues and know what to do in this situation.

“All (sectors of aviation industry) will use the past experiences and we will continue to manage the Iranian air transport like in the past four decades,” the official went on to say.

The US Treasury on Wednesday imposed new sanctions on Iran’s biggest airline and its shipping industry, accusing them of “transporting lethal aid from Iran to Yemen”, according to Western media reports.

Washington targeted three general sales agents of Mahan Air and blacklisted the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines.

The remarks come against the backdrop of increased tensions between Iran and the US with Washington imposing new sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

The US has ratcheted up pressure on Iran since last year after withdrawing from the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Since then, the administration of US President Donald Trump has been trying to reduce Iran’s oil exports to “zero,” and has sent an aircraft carrier strike group, a bomber squad, an amphibious assault ship, and a Patriot missile battery to the Middle East to try to stack up pressure on Tehran.

Iranian officials, however, have dismissed such moves as psychological warfare, saying the country has its own ways of circumventing the American bans.