WASHINGTON — Weeks before it is to reimpose another round of punishing sanctions on Iran, the Trump administration warned the world’s banks on Thursday that Tehran might try to use duplicitous means to soften the sanctions’ bite and continue to fund terrorism.
Iran’s bankers and officials have used front companies, fraudulent documents and other measures to generate revenue for the country’s terrorist activities, the administration said.
“Any country that allows its central bank to be involved in deception in support of terrorism requires the highest levels of scrutiny, particularly when the country itself is the world’s largest state sponsor of terrorism,” said Sigal Mandelker, the Treasury Department’s under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence.
The warning is part of a coordinated campaign by the administration to persuade banks and corporations around the world to sever all commercial ties with Iran not only because of looming American sanctions but also because it says Tehran diverts even seemingly innocuous transactions toward illicit ends. No new sanctions or penalties were announced on Thursday.
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