March 18 – The US said it would not allow Russia to use the Iran nuclear deal as a way to evade Ukraine-related sanctions, in a statement issued on Tuesday by the US State Department.

Russia, which is a party to the 2015 deal, has been sanctioned by the US for its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov met with Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian on Tuesday and rejected the suggestion that Moscow had been blocking attempts to revive the nuclear agreement.

Washington said it was considering removing Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) from the US’s sanctions list, according to an unnamed source.  Speaking to Reuters the source said Washington had agreed to consider delisting the IRGC on the condition that Iran curbed the force’s activities.

The force is responsible for some of the regime’s key mandates, including expanding the Islamic Republic’s sphere of influence in the Middle East.

The US designated the IRGC as a terrorist organization in 2019 and imposed economic and travel sanctions on the military wing. Two officials from the force were sanctioned in 2021 by the US for alleged human rights violations against Iranian political prisoners and protesters.

And Anoosheh Ashoori and Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe were released from detention in Iran and flown back to Britain following the payment of a decades-old multi-million dollar debt owed to Iran by the UK.

The detained Iranian-American Morad Tahbaz — who is also a British citizen — was put on furlough as part of a deal to release the dual nationals. Mehran Raoof, a British-Iranian labor activist detained in Iran since 2020 remains in prison.

Ashoori and Zaghari-Ratcliffe touched down in England in the early hours of Thursday morning following a flight which included a stopover in Oman. From everyone at Kayhan Life, welcome home, and we wish you a happy and healthy future.

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