New sanctions on Iran over role in Ukraine

Foreign Affairs

New sanctions are being imposed on Iran for its supply of weapons technology to Russia causing death and injury to Ukrainian civilians, as part of our continuing response to the war.

Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced sanctions on three Iranian individuals and one entity involved in the manufacture and supply of drones to Russia.

“Iran is now the third country to be sanctioned under the Russia Sanctions Act, alongside Russia and Belarus,” said Nanaia Mahuta.

“Russia is using drones to target civilian populations in Ukraine, as well as vital infrastructure such as electricity generation and the power grid. The Ukrainian population is struggling with shortages of electricity, heating and water during a harsh winter.

The Iranian actions threaten the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. The attacks on civilians in Ukraine are condemned.

“Those sanctioned include two Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps commanders Saeed Aghajani and Amir Ali Hajizadeh; as well as the Armed Forces General Staff chair Mohammad Hossein Bagheri; and drone manufacturer Shahed Aviation Industries.

“The sanctions mean those named are subject to asset freezes, travel bans, and restrictions on commercial activity with anyone in New Zealand.

“Today’s sanctions against Iran for supply of drones follow separate measures already taken in response to human rights violations in Iran. These include travel bans announced earlier this week, and a rolling series of initiatives to hold Iran to account through multilateral forums like the United Nations.

“The sanctions represent Aotearoa New Zealand’s clear condemnation of Iranian involvement in the supply of drones to Russia for use in its unjustified and illegal invasion of Ukraine,” said Nanaia Mahuta.

“We stand with the people of Ukraine. We continue to call for restraint by Iranian authorities in responding to the demonstrations, and for greater protection of women’s rights and freedom of expression. We condemn the violent suppression of human rights protests in Iran,” said Nanaia Mahuta.

More information about sanctions, travel bans, and export controls against Russia and Belarus, as well as diplomatic, military and economic support to Ukraine, can be found on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade website here.