Canada, U.S., U.K. lay additional sanctions on Iran over attack on Israel

Foreign Affairs Minister Melanie Joly says she's urging Israel to de-escalate rising conflicts in the Middle East and not bomb Iran in retaliation for Sunday's thwarted airstrikes. Joly speaks with reporters in the foyer of the House of Commons before question period in Ottawa on April 15. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld © ajw

Global News-Canada on Thursday joined the United States and United Kingdom in laying additional sanctions on Iran over its unprecedented missile and drone attack on Israel earlier this month.

Foreign Minister Melanie Joly announced Ottawa was sanctioning Iran’s defence minister Mohammad Reza Ashtiani, the general staff of the armed forces, the Khatam al-Anbiya Central Headquarters and its commander, Gholam Ali Rashid.

“Today’s measures deliver a clear message: Canada and its allies are prepared and will not hesitate to take action against the Iranian regime as it seeks to destabilize regional peace and security,” Joly said in a statement.

Khatam al-Anbiya Central Headquarters is the main command headquarters of the Iranian Armed Forces.

The U.S. and U.K. sanctions also announced Thursday targeted Iran’s drone industry. Britain also said it would introduce new bans on the export of drone and missile components to Iran, seeking to limit its military capabilities.

While both countries said the sanctions were in response to Iran’s attack on Israel, the U.S. Treasury said it was also seeking to thwart Tehran’s supply of drones to Russia in its invasion of Ukraine.

Thursday’s actions come after the United States and United Kingdom laid coordinated sanctions on Iranian military figures and organizations in response to the attack on Israel.

Iran launched more than 300 drones and missiles on April 13 against Israel, its first direct attack on the country, in retaliation for a suspected Israeli air strike on its embassy compound in Damascus on April 1 that killed elite military officers.

Most of the missiles and drones launched by Iran were intercepted by Israeli and U.S.-led coalition forces, as well as Israel’s air defence systems. A suspected Israeli drone attack on an Iranian airfield followed on April 19, but Iran has downplayed the incident and has said it will not retaliate further.

The Israeli and American militaries have not publicly confirmed Israel was behind either the April 1 or April 19 strikes.