Iran to sanction U.S. officials

May 23, 2011 at 12:31 PM

TEHRAN, May 23 (UPI) -- Tehran aims to place economic sanctions on 26 officials in the United States for alleged human rights violations, an Iranian lawmaker said.

The Iranian Parliament is expecting a list Tuesday of U.S. officials "who have committed human rights violations across the world, such as in Iraq and Afghanistan, and supported terrorism and engaged in drug smuggling, will be sanctioned by the Islamic republic," reports Radio Zamaneh, a Persian broadcaster based in the Netherlands.

Kazem Jalali, a spokesman for a national security commission in the Iranian Parliament, didn't provide the names of the U.S. officials on the pending sanctions list.

Iran's Intelligence Ministry announced during the weekend that 30 people were arrested for allegedly working with the CIA.

The alleged spies were supposedly working out of U.S. embassies in United Arab Emirates, Turkey and Malaysia under the guise of being recruitment agencies, enlisting Iranians to get visas for work and education abroad. Washington recently eased restrictions for Iranian student visas.

The United States and its Western allies have ratcheted up their own sanctions against Iran and its top leaders for alleged human rights abuses and for Tehran's controversial nuclear program.

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