Canada sanctions 17 more Iranian officials amid unrest over Mahsa Amini death

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How Iranian-Canadians are reacting to the death of Mahsa Amini
WATCH LIVE: Federal ministers discuss Canada's efforts to hold Iranian regime accountable – Oct 11, 2022

Foreign Affairs Minister Melanie Joly said Thursday that Canada is adding more Iranian officials and entities to the sanctions list.

The measures will mean 17 individuals and three entities are barred from entering Canada or doing business with most Canadian firms.

These sanctions are targeted at Iranian officials who have committed or enabled human-rights violations against women, or perpetuated disinformation, Joly said.

The list includes Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iran’s recent longtime foreign minister, whom Canadian groups had asked to be sanctioned.

Read more: Iran sees ‘major disruption’ of internet amid calls for renewed protests

It also includes Saeed Mortazavi, the prosecutor who ordered the torture of Zahra Kazemi, an Iranian Canadian journalist who died in custody in 2003.

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Joly said it was particularly important to list Mortazavi.

“My message to the Iranian regime is we haven’t forgotten, and we will never forget, and that’s why we’re imposing these new sanctions,” Joly said in an interview Thursday morning from Seoul, South Korea.

The fresh sanctions will also apply to Brig.-Gen. Amir Hatami, Iran’s former defence minister and a senior adviser to the current commander-in-chief.

Also listed are Peyman Jebelli, the head of the state broadcaster, and Hossein Shariatmadari, the editor-in-chief of the state-controlled Kayhan newspaper that Joly’s office accuses of regularly publishing antisemitic propaganda, Holocaust denial and threats against Canada’s allies.

A senior prisons official Gholamreza Ziaei will be listed, as will senior government adviser Ali Larijani. A commander of police forces in southwestern Iran, Manouchehr Amanollahi, is also on the list.

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Social media playing major role in Iranian protests

Those listed will have their Canadian-held assets frozen, as Ottawa tries to put a new law into action to seize those assets and disperse them to victims and human-rights defenders.

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Later Thursday, federal cabinet ministers were expected to share more details of the round of sanctions announced last Friday, which are meant to bar high-ranking members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps from entering Canada, for life.

That move followed mounting pressure by the Conservatives and members of the Iranian diaspora in Canada to list that entire organization as a terrorist group, which experts argued is not feasible.

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