Trump Administration Bans Iranian Government Officials and Their Families From Traveling to the United States

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Posted: Sep 26, 2019 9:00 AM
Trump Administration Bans Iranian Government Officials and Their Families From Traveling to the United States

Source: (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)

The State Department announced Thursday that elite Iranian officials who take advantage of freedoms they access in America will no longer be allowed to travel to the United States. Their children will also be barred from entry. 

"Today, the President announced a Presidential Proclamation restricting entry into the United States for senior Iranian government officials and members of their families.  For years, Iranian officials and their family members have quietly taken advantage of America’s freedom and prosperity, including excellent educational, employment, entertainment, and cultural opportunities in the United States.  Under this proclamation, designated senior regime officials and their families will no longer be allowed entry into the United States.  No longer will elites reap the benefits of a free society while the Iranian people suffer under the regime’s corruption and mismanagement," the State Department released. 

"The Government of Iran is the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism. The regime has destabilized the Persian Gulf region with attacks on oil and shipping infrastructure.  Their support for the Houthis in Yemen and Shia militias in Iraq and Syria contribute to the regional instability and the humanitarian crises in those countries. The Iranian regime continues to suppress members of ethnic and religious minorities in Iran, as well as unjustly detaining foreign citizens to perpetuate their foreign policy aims," the statement continues. "America will no longer allow senior Iranian regime officials or their family members to continue to travel to the United States while their people suffer."

The announcement comes as the United States wraps up the annual United Nations General Assembly in New York City. During the meetings, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani spoke and made clear Iran will not negotiate with the United States until sanctions on the regime are lifted. Earlier in the week, President Trump warned sanctions will tighten if Iran continues its violent behavior. 

“One of the greatest security threats facing peace-loving nations today is the repressive regime in Iran. The regime’s record of death and destruction is well-known to us all. Not only is Iran the world’s number one state sponsor of terrorism—but Iran’s leaders are fueling the tragic wars in both Syria and Yemen. At the same time, the regime is squandering the nation’s wealth and future in a fanatical quest for nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them. We must never allow this to happen,” Trump said. “To stop Iran’s path to nuclear weapons and missiles, I withdrew the United States from the terrible Iran Nuclear Deal, which has very little time remaining, did not allow inspection of important sites, and did not cover ballistic missiles. Following our withdrawal we have implemented severe economic sanctions on the country." 

“All nations have a duty to act. No responsible government should subsidize Iran’s bloodlust. As long as Iran’s menacing behavior continues, sanctions will not be lifted, they will be tightened. Iran’s leaders will have turned a proud nation into just another cautionary tale of what happens when a ruling class abandons its people and embarks on a crusade for personal power and riches," he continued. 

Last week additional sanctions were levied on the regime.