The United States is imposing sanctions on a network of individuals and entities from Iran and China for supporting Iran’s missile and military programs.
The State Department announced Tuesday that the sanctions will designate seven individuals and six entities, including Iran’s defense attaché in Beijing, Davoud Damghani, "for supporting the activities of Iran’s Ministry of Defense and Armed Forces Logistics, Parchin Chemicals Industries, and P.B. Sadr, all of which are U.S.-designated entities as key actors in Iran’s ballistic missile program."
The sanctions come as relations between China and Iran have strengthened during the Biden administration. The leaders of both nations met in February, marking the first time an Iranian president made a state visit to China in two decades, the Washington Free Beacon reported.
During the visit, Chinese president Xi Jinping said the Communist regime "will unswervingly maintain its friendship and cooperation with Iran and advance China-Iran comprehensive strategic partnership." The two nations worked to finalize a set of bilateral cooperation agreements during Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi's visit, aiming to establish unprecedented levels of economic integration between Tehran and Beijing.
On Tuesday, Iran officially reopened its embassy in Saudi Arabia following a peace deal between the two nations brokered by China. The deal aims to end the Middle Eastern rivals' diplomatic rift and reestablish relations following years of hostility in the region. The deal also highlights China’s growing influence in the Middle East.
This week, Iran also unveiled a new hypersonic ballistic missile, which state media claimed is capable of bypassing Israel's Iron Dome missile defense system.