Iran sanctions U.S. think tank for combating Tehran’s nuclear program

The clerical regime lashed out at FDD, accusing the think tank of “spreading lies, lobbyism, [and] propaganda against Iran,” according to a report in state-controlled Mehr news agency

August 24, 2019 22:49
2 minute read.
Iran FM Zarif, EU Foreign Affairs Rep. Mogherini, and Iranian and Russian officials in Vienna 2015

Iran FM Zarif, EU Rep. for Foreign Affairs Mogherini, and Iranian and Russian officials at signing of nuclear deal in Vienna, 2015. (photo credit: LEONHARD FOEGER / REUTERS)

The foreign ministry for Iran’s regime announced on Saturday that it has begun imposing sanctions on the prominent Foundation for Defense of Democracies think tank and its chief executive officer Mark Dubowitz for alleged “economic terrorism.”

The clerical regime lashed out at FDD, accusing the think tank of “spreading lies, lobbyism, [and] propaganda against Iran,” according to a report in state-controlled Mehr news agency

Mehr reported that “FDD’s actions are in line with the goals of the ‘US economic terrorism.’”

The US government re-imposed sanctions on Tehran last year for its malign activities.

The Mehr article said “Iran’s Foreign Ministry refers to the impacts of ‘the US economic terrorism’ on ordinary Iranians including endangering the lives of many innocent people, Iran’s legitimate trade with the world and the impact of the US illegal sanctions on Iran’s environment, adding that the sanctions are aimed at changing the Islamic Republic establishment.”

According to Iran’s foreign ministry, the sanctions against FDD were based on a law titled “Countering America’s Human Rights Violation and Adventurous and Terrorist Actions” that was passed by Iran’s quasi-parliament in 2017.

Iran’s regime complained about FDD “heightening the impact of the US sanction on [the] Iranian nation.”

FDD’s CEO Mark Dubowitz said in a statement on Saturday: “FDD conducts independent research and analysis on national security issues. The Islamic Republic prohibits such freedoms at home, and would like to do so abroad as well. The Islamic Republic, which has occupied the great nation of Iran for four decades, continues to brutally repress the peoples of Iran, stealing their wealth and creating destruction and chaos in the Middle East. FDD considers its inclusion on any list put out by the regime as a badge of honor, and looks forward to the day when Americans and others can visit a free and democratic Iran.”

FDD is a non-partisan “research institute focusing on national security and foreign policy,” according to its website, and “conducts in-depth research, produces accurate and timely analyses, identifies illicit activities, and provides policy options – all with the aim of strengthening US national security and reducing or eliminating threats posed by adversaries and enemies of the United States and other free nations.”

Dubowitz is widely considered a leading international expert on sanctions.

According to The New York Times, “Mark Dubowitz’s campaign to draw attention to what he saw as the flaws in the Iran nuclear deal has taken its place among the most consequential ever undertaken by a Washington think tank leader.”

FDD noted that it” regularly provides open-source research and analyses to policy-makers and the media. Since its founding, FDD has shared its expertise with the Bush, Obama, and Trump administrations and Congressional offices on a bi-partisan basis.”

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