US imposes penalties on Iranian commercial airline

AP News
Posted: Oct 12, 2011 2:09 PM
US imposes penalties on Iranian commercial airline

The U.S. is penalizing an Iranian commercial airline that it says is helping Iran's feared special operations forces.

The Treasury Department says Mahan Air provides financial, material and technological support to the Quds Force and to Hezbollah.

A Treasury statement says the airline ferries personnel between Iran and Syria for military training and helps Iranian officers covertly travel abroad.

The Quds Force is part of Iran's Revolutionary Guard military unit. The U.S. says a Quds member who's at large in Iran plotted to assassinate Saudi Arabia's ambassador to the United States.

The U.S. is banning Americans from doing business with the airline and is blocking any assets the airline might have in the U.S.

The Treasury Department says Mahan's crews also shipped Iranian arms, some on behalf of Hezbollah.