Iran: More individuals and entities designated by US
On Tuesday, the United States Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated the Iranian regime’s envoy to the Houthi rebels in Yemen. The envoy is known as Hasan Irlu. The US also designated an official from the Quds Force of the notorious Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), as well as the Al-Mustafa International University.
The Al-Mustafa International University serves as a front that allows the Iranian regime and the IRGC and the Quds Force to recruit. It has branches in several countries and the IRGC and Quds Force use it specifically for intelligence operations and to recruit foreign militias. This involved recruiting militias to fight on behalf of Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad.
The U.S. designated the IRGC-QF “envoy” to the Houthis, Hassan Irlu, Al-Mustafa International University, and an Iran-based operations coordinator for supporting the IRGC-QF. We will continue to use all tools to expose and counter Iran's malign behavior. https://t.co/9kPguwqpYl
— Cale Brown (@StateDeputySPOX) December 8, 2020
In a statement, the US Treasury Department indicated that the university has branches in more than 50 countries and that it “enables IRGC-QF intelligence operations by allowing its student body, which includes large numbers of foreign and American students, to serve as an international recruitment network”.
It emphasized that recruits from the university have been sent to Syria where they have fought on behalf of the Quds Force. It led to the establishment of the Fatemiyoun Division – a militia led by Iran, comprising mostly of ethnic Afghans that were residing in Iran. The university was also able to establish another Shia militia – the Zaynabiyoun Brigade – made up of mostly Pakistanis.
Both of these divisions, the US Treasury Department highlighted, are designated “under counterterrorism and human rights authorities”. Many of the students recruited through the university have gone on to die during the battle. The regime sees these lives as expendable.
The US Treasury Department also said that the IRGC and Quds Force use the university to “develop student exchanges with foreign universities”. The purpose of this is to indoctrinate and recruit foreigners. “Unwitting tourists” from numerous countries in the West have been brought to Iran through the university and the IRGC used them to gather intelligence before they are sent to Syria.
Iranian regime's Houthi terror proxy should be designated terrorist organization by US. It has repeatedly targeted KSA cities & infrastructure. Its slogan is "God is Greater, Death to America, Death to Israel, Curse on the Jews, Victory to Islam." https://t.co/Extk0tQfAC
— Avi Kaner (@AviKaner) December 3, 2020
Irlu, the envoy, has been designated because it has provided training and supplied advanced weapons to the Houthis. Iraq has been in contact with the IRGC to support the regime’s efforts in Yemen and the Arabian Peninsula. He also had close ties with Iran’s top terrorist, the now-deceased commander of the IRGC’s Quds Force Qasem Soleimani.
The US Treasury Department emphasized that appointing Irlu as an envoy to the Houthi terrorists in Yemen shows that the Iranian regime has no intention of contributing to conflict resolution in Yemen. This, the US Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin said, “has led to the widespread suffering of millions of Yemenis”.
Mr. Mnuchin also said that the regime’s recruitment of students from abroad shows that “illustrates the degree to which the group has infiltrated Iranian society in order to achieve its destructive goals. These efforts, and the pervasive role the IRGC-QF plays in Iranian foreign policy, contribute to the erosion of trust in Iran’s public and private institutions.”
Here's the @StateDept briefing on #Iran #Terror #proxy #IRGC activities, including attribution of 608 #USA combat deaths. https://t.co/TXXgWkOk2p @GulfStatesInst @ArabCenterWDC @GulfIntlForum @CH_MENAP @EGIC_ @barbaraslavin1 @WashInstitute @SanamVakil @ArabiaFdn @WarInstitute
— Dave DesRoches (@DBDesRoches) April 5, 2019
The Iranian regime has openly admitted that it sends agents to the United States and other nations under the guise of journalists. In August 2018, US authorities arrested two agents of the regime’s Ministry of Intelligence (MOIS) for plotting a terror attack against members of the People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (PMOI / MEK Iran), an opposition pro-democracy group.
On April 8, 2019, the United States added the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) to its list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTOs). The designation marks another significant step by the United in ending the longstanding policy of appeasement toward the mullahs.
Had the disastrous, decades-long policy of appeasement not provided so much freedom of action to the mullahs & IRGC, the Iranian regime could not have caused so much bloodshed in Iraq, Syria. Lebanon, Yemen & Afghanistan. #Iran #BlackListIRGC
— Maryam Rajavi (@Maryam_Rajavi) April 8, 2019
Following the announcement, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), issued a statement on the IRGC’s terrorist designation, calling it an imperative for Middle Eastern security, peace, and stability, and an urgent and necessary step to end war and terrorism throughout the region and the world.