Australia sanctions Iran’s morality police, Russia over human rights violations | World News

Australia’s foreign minister on Saturday said the government would place targeted sanctions on Russia and Iran in response to what it said were “egregious” human rights violations.

In a statement, Foreign Minister Penny Wong said Australia was imposing Magnitsky-style sanctions on 13 individuals and two entities, including Iran’s Morality Police and Basij Resistance Force, and six Iranians involved in the crackdown on protests sparked by the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in custody in September.

Seven Russians involved in what the foreign minister said was the attempted assassination of former opposition leader Alexei Navalny would also have human rights sanctions imposed on them, she said.

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In addition to human rights sanctions, Wong said Australia was placing further targeted financial sanctions on three Iranians and one Iranian business for supplying drones to Russia for use against Ukraine.

“The supply of drones to Russia is evidence of the role Iran plays in destabilising global security. This listing highlights that those who provide material support to Russia will face consequences,” Wong said in the statement jointly issued with Assistant Foreign Affairs Minister Tim Watts.

The announcement comes after Australia’s centre-left Labour government in October imposed targeted financial sanctions and travel bans on 28 Russian-appointed separatists, ministers and senior officials after President Vladimir Putin proclaimed the annexation of four regions of Ukraine.

Since the start of the conflict, Australia has sanctioned hundreds of Russian individuals and entities, including most of Russia’s banking sector and all organisations responsible for the country’s sovereign debt.

It also has supplied defence equipment and humanitarian aid to Ukraine, while outlawing exports of alumina and aluminium ores, including bauxite, to Russia.

Australia’s previous Liberal-National coalition government first imposed Magnitsky-style sanctions – measures that impose financial penalties and travel bans against individuals – in March against 14 Russian individuals.

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