EU bans elite commanders, seven others during 2019 protests

EU bans elite commanders, seven others during 2019 protests

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The European Union (EU) has imposed sanctions on eight Iranian militia commanders and police chiefs, including the head of the Elite Revolutionary Guards, over a deadly crackdown in November 2019.

Travel bans and asset freezes imposed the first European sanctions on Iran for human rights abuses in 2013, as the bloc angered Tehran in hopes of protecting a nuclear deal reached with world powers in 2015. Had returned.

His preparations were first reported by Reuters last month.

The Islamic Republic's most powerful and heavily armed security force, the head of the Revolutionary Guards, Hussein Salami, was blacklisted, which also targeted three Iranian prisons where assets were frozen.

The European Union (EU) said in a statement that "Hussein Salami took part in the sessions that led to orders to use deadly force to quell the November 2019 protests. Accepts. "

Two of the three approved prisons were in the Tehran area, where the European Union says detainees detained after the 2019 protests were deliberately injured by boiling water and denied medical treatment.

At least 1,500 people were killed in less than two weeks of unrest that began on November 15, 2019, according to a tool provided to Reuters by three Iranian Interior Ministry officials at the time. The United Nations said the total was at least 304.

Iran has called the source's tool "fake news."

Iran has repeatedly denied Western allegations of human rights abuses.

On March 9, Javed Rehman, the US special envoy for the human rights situation in Iran, released a report stating that Tehran had used lethal force during the protests and failed to properly investigate or prosecute anyone. Also supported him when he failed to be held accountable.

Other EU sanctions imposed on Monday include members of Iran's hardline Basij militia, led by the Revolutionary Guards, and its head, Gholamirza Soleimani.

The eight Iranians were added to the EU's sanctions list for human rights abuses in Iran, which began in 2011 and now has 89 individuals and four entities. This includes a ban on the export of goods that could be used for repression.

Diplomatic staff said the sanctions were not linked to efforts to restore the nuclear deal, which was scrapped by the United States but now seeks to rejoin. The agreement made it difficult for Iran to gather the materials needed for a nuclear bomb in exchange for lifting sanctions.

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