- U.S. sanctions individuals, companies involved in Iranian missile program, IRGC
- White House announces “huge” pivot on settlements
- Iran to blind woman in grotesque revenge punishment
- Israeli study shows that creative people sleep more but not well
"Iran’s continued support for terrorism and development of its missile program poses a threat to the region, to our partners worldwide and to the United States,” said John E. Smith, the acting sanctions chief at the U.S. Treasury Department. “We will continue to actively apply all available tools, including financial sanctions, to address this behavior.” President Trump vowed on Sunday, in a phone call with Saudi King Salman bin Abd al-Aziz al-Saud, to “rigorously enforc[e]” the Iran deal and to address “Iran’s destabilizing regional activities.”
UN Security Council Resolution 2231 codifies the nuclear deal and calls on Iran “not to undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such ballistic missile technology.” The resolution also says that Iran must abide by previous Security Council resolutions, which placed restrictions on ballistic missile work until 2023.
NATO leaders said in a joint communique last July that they were “seriously concerned by the development of Iran’s ballistic missile programme and continuing missile tests that are inconsistent with [Resolution] 2231.”
Many have likened the Trump administration’s stance to the policy outlined in a letter sent from former President George W. Bush to former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in 2004. In that letter, Bush wrote, “In light of new realities on the ground, including already existing major Israeli population centers, it is unrealistic to expect that the outcome of final-status negotiations will be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949.” In fact, Kontorovich argued that the Trump statement goes beyond the Bush-Sharon letter because it doesn't differentiate between construction in settlement blocs - which are understood to become part of Israel in any future two-state outcome - and other settlements.
The full White House statement released Thursday reads as follows: “While we don't believe the existence of settlements is an impediment to peace, the construction of new settlements or the expansion of existing settlements beyond their current borders may not be helpful in achieving that goal. As the President has expressed many times, he hopes to achieve peace throughout the Middle East region. The Trump administration has not taken an official position on settlement activity and looks forward to continuing discussions, including with Prime Minister Netanyahu when he visits with President Trump later this month.”
"The sentence to blindness in one eye, payment of blood money (compensation), and seven years imprisonment have been confirmed by the highest court," Tasnim quoted head of judiciary Majid Karami in the province of Kohgiluyeh as saying.
Several acid attacks have been reported in Iran in the past few years. Women have had acid thrown in their faces—causing blindness—for refusing marriage proposals, as was the case with Ameneh Bahrami (warning: graphic photo).
Acid attacks are an exceptionally cruel form of violence, and most victims worldwide are women and children. Blindness often follows as does the inability to use one's hands.
Human rights group Amnesty International recently released a statement on the "vicious punishments" Iran undertook in 2016.
"Iran's prolific use of corporal punishment, including flogging, amputation and blinding, throughout 2016 highlights the inhumanity of a justice system that legalizes brutality," said Randa Habib, Amnesty International's Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa. The spree of cruel and unusual punishments has already bled over into 2017.