Iran threatens to retaliate if USA designates Revolutionary Guards as terrorists
08 April, 2019, 05:44 | Author: Emmett Rice
Lawmakers in Tehran over the weekend vowed retaliation if the Trump administration moves ahead with a plan to label Iran's Revolutionary Guard a terrorist organization.
The United States added Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) to its antiterrorism sanctions list in October 2017, but in the statement announcing the decision, the Department of Treasury emphasized that the development did not mean the USA designated the IRGC as a foreign terrorist organization.
Meanwhile, past year Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats cautioned the administration designating the IRGC could pose dangers to USA forces, according to one source familiar with the matter.
The decision, the officials said, will be announced by the US State Department, perhaps as early as Monday.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, a strident Iran hawk, has advocated the change in U.S. policy as part of the Trump administration's tough posture toward Tehran. "A formal designation and its consequences may be new, but these IRGC butchers have been terrorists for a long time", Sasse said in a statement.
The decades-long conflict between Tehran and Washington reignited a year ago when President Donald Trump unilaterally pulled the U.S. out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on the Iranian nuclear program and re-imposed sanctions on the Islamic republic.
The US has already blacklisted dozens of entities and individuals affiliated with the IRGC, but not the group as a whole.
But Iranian officials say they'll respond in kind and will treat US military forces "like the Islamic State all around the world", suggesting possible violent confrontations between the two sides.
We will answer any action taken against this force with a reciprocal action.
The Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps was formed after Iran's 1979 revolution with a mission to defend the government, in contrast to more traditional military units that protect borders.
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