US slaps sanctions on Iran’s defense ministry, Venezuela’s Maduro over arms embargo violations

The United States said Monday it was imposing sanctions on Iran’s defence ministry and Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro under a United Nations authority which is widely contested.

“For nearly two years, corrupt officials in Tehran have worked with the illegitimate regime in Venezuela to flout the U.N. arms embargo,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters.

“Our actions today are a warning that should be heard worldwide,” he said.

Pompeo said that President Donald Trump has issued an executive order “that is a new and powerful tool to enforce the U.N. arms embargo.”

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, appearing with Pompeo, also announced separate sanctions on the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran.

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