Treasury sanctions Iran prison leaders for human rights abuses

Treasury sanctions Iran prison leaders for human rights abuses
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The Treasury Department is sanctioning an Iranian prison company and its former leader for orchestrating the beating of more than 30 political prisoners in 2014, the agency announced Thursday.

Tehran Prisons Organization and Sohrab Soleimani were added to the Treasury’s list of officials and organizations involved with human rights abuses in Iran. They’re now blocked from the U.S. financial system, and U.S. persons and businesses are barred from conducting financial transactions with them.

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“Today’s designations highlight our continued support for the Iranian people and demonstrate our commitment to hold the Government of Iran responsible for its continued repression of its own citizens,” said John E. Smith, director of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control.

“We will continue to identify, call out, and sanction those who are responsible for serious human rights abuses in Iran.”

Tehran Prisons Organization operates Evin Prison, an infamous center of human rights abuses where prisoners are beaten, starved, physically and psychologically tortured, forced to make false confessions, and denied access to basic medical care.

Evin Prison guards seriously wounded political prisoners during an April 2014 attack, when Soleimani led the prison company. Soleimani currently holds a leadership position within the State Prisons Organization, which oversees the Tehran Prisons Organization.