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US sanctions Turkey-based firms for supporting Iran’s UAV production

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Two Turkey-based firms are among individuals and entities targeted by fresh US sanctions for their involvement in transactions related to Iran’s unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) development.

According to the US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), five entities and two individuals based in Iran, the People’s Republic of China (PRC), Hong Kong, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are targeted with sanctions for their involvement in the procurement of sensitive parts for Iran’s UAV program.

“This network has facilitated shipments and financial transactions in support of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Aerospace Force Self Sufficiency Jihad Organization’s (IRGC ASF SSJO) procurement of servomotors, a critical component used in Iran’s Shahed-series UAVs,” the OFAC statement said.

According to OFAC, Iran-based Pishgam Electronic Safeh Company (PESC) has procured thousands of servomotors with one-way attack UAV applications, worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, for Iran’s IRGC ASF SSJO.

Turkey-based firms Dal Enerji Madencilik Turizm Sanayi Ve Ticaret Anonim Şirketi (Dal Enerji) and Anka Port İç Ve Dış Ticaret İNŞAAT Lojistik Sanayi Limited Şirketi (Anka Port) have facilitated financial transactions totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars in support of PESC’s servomotor procurement from Hongkong Himark, affording PESC access to the US and international financial systems, OFAC said.

According to OFAC, Dal Enerji also helped in payments for illegal Iranian petrochemical sales, supporting the Iran Chemical Industries Investment Company (ICIIC).

“Iranian-made UAVs continue to be a key tool for Russia in its attacks in Ukraine, including those that terrorize Ukrainian citizens and attack its critical infrastructure,” said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson. “The United States, in coordination with our allies and partners, will persist in holding accountable those who contribute to Iran’s proliferation of its UAVs to Russia, its proxies in the Middle East, and other destabilizing actors.”

Wednesday’s action builds on OFAC’s November 15, 2022  designation of Iran’s Shahed Aviation Industries Research Center (SAIRC), a firm subordinate to the IRGC ASF that designs and manufactures the Shahed-136 one-way attack UAV that Iran has supplied to Russia.

As a result of the sanctions, all property and interests in property of the individuals and entities that are in the United States or in the possession or control of US persons must be blocked and reported to OFAC. In addition any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons are also blocked. All transactions by US persons or within the United States (including transactions transiting the United States) that involve any property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons are prohibited.

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