Saturday, September 21, 2019

U.S. Sanctions Iran’s Central Bank, Says It Will Send Military Forces to Saudi Arabia

Photo: Evan Vucci/Associated Press
The sanctions action, part of a ‘maximum pressure’ campaign meant to avoid war, targets institutions critical to the last vestiges of Iran’s international trade
The U.S. said it would send military forces and hardware to Gulf allies and moved to sever some of Iran’s last ties to world markets on Friday, while preparing to outline a case for international action next week when world leaders gather at the United Nations.
The sanctions on Iran’s central bank and two other major state financial institutions were punishment for attacks on critical oil supplies in Saudi Arabia. They came as the administration sought to steer clear of a military response, instead bolstering administration efforts to persuade the U.N. and European allies to join its sanctions campaign.
“It’s going to hell,” President Trump said, referring to Iran’s economy. “All they have to do is stop with the terror.”
Mr. Trump plans to air accusations of Iranian violence in meetings with world leaders throughout the week, a senior administration official said, adding Iran will be a top theme of the annual U.N. General Assembly gathering.
Mr. Trump is hoping to build an international coalition to pressure Iran, using last weekend’s cruise missile and drone strikes against a Saudi oil field and refinery as fresh evidence of Tehran’s wrongdoing. He will be accompanied at the U.N. by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who has spent the week calling U.S. allies and traveling to the Middle East.
“The regime in Tehran must be held accountable through diplomatic isolation and economic pressure,” Mr. Pompeo said.
Pentagon to send more troops to Middle East amid 
‘significant escalation’ from Iran
The U.S. military will develop plans to deploy a “moderate” number of troops and air and missile defenses to Saudi Arabia in response to the strikes, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and Marine Gen. Joe Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in a Friday night briefing at the Pentagon.
The deployment, which Mr. Esper described as “defensive in nature,” is intended to protect international commerce and buttress Saudi defenses, the Pentagon leaders said.
Read the rest from the WSJ HERE.

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