The US Senate is set to consider new economic sanctions against Iran that would include the blacklisting and blocking the assets of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB).
The new sanctions, among other economic features, would blacklist the IRIB and its president, block all the IRIB assets and prevent others from doing business with it.
The proposed sanction that would hit the IRIB is another attempt by the West to silence Iranian media. In a flagrant violation of the freedom of speech, two satellite providers Eutelsat SA and Intelsat SA stopped the broadcast of several Iranian satellite channels in October, citing pressure by the European Union.
Earlier this month, the Hong Kong-based Asia Satellite Telecommunications Co. Ltd. (AsiaSat) also took all Iranian channels off air in East Asia under pressure from the US.
The new sanctions to be considered by the US Senate could also target transactions for goods and services with Iran’s energy, oil, port, shipping and ship-building sectors. They would also target trade with Iran in graphite and precious metals.
The bans would also ban insurance or reinsurance providers from trading with Iran in energy, shipping and ship-building sectors, as well as with designated persons and entities.
Foreign banks that handle transactions for Iranian persons that have been designated by the United States could also be targeted by the proposed embargoes.
US lawmakers say the fresh move is part of measures aimed at pressuring Iran to halt its nuclear energy program.
The proposal could be put into vote by the Senate as early as Thursday.
The United States, Israel and some of their allies have repeatedly accused Iran of pursuing non-civilian objectives in its nuclear energy program.
Over the false allegation, Washington and the European Union have imposed illegal unilateral sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
Iran refutes the allegations and argues that as a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency, it is entitled to develop and acquire nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.