Iran found itself at the centre of a scandal involving U.S. voting registration details this week.
Along with Moscow, Tehran was accused of trying to meddle with the U.S. presidential elections after hacking into voters’ emails and sending intimidating messages to try to sway votes.
U.S. Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe said some voter registration information had been obtained by Iran and used to send emails designed to intimidate voters, incite social unrest and damage U.S. President Donald Trump.
The emails appeared to have been sent by the pro-Trump Proud Boys group, who have denied sending the blasts. Experts have claimed that if the source of the emails was Iran, the motivation was to paint Trump in a poor light by drawing attention to the far-right neofascist group. Iran and Moscow have denied any involvement.
The U.S. blacklisted two Chinese men and six Chinese entities for having engaged with Iranian shipping company Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) and, in some instances, helping the company to dodge U.S. sanctions.
The U.S. State Department accused the six entities of providing “significant goods or services” in connection with Iran’s shipping sector, while one group was accused of enabling the Iranian company to evade sanctions.
The effect of the sanctions means that the assets of the individuals and entities which fall under U.S. jurisdiction will now be frozen and U.S. citizens barred from engaging with them.
And a woman cycling without her hijab through the city of Najafabad in Iran has been arrested after a video of her traveling on the city’s roads went viral. Wearing a hijab is mandatory in Iran, and a failure to do so can lead to arrest, a prison sentence, flogging or a fine.
The woman, who has not been named, can be seen holding her arm up in the air as she cycles in the video, in an apparent salute to signal that her rule breaking was a conscious act of defiance.
The local governor of Najafabad told Iran’s State media that the woman was arrested for violating norms and for insulting the Islamic veil.