US Treasury warns companies doing business with Iran-related civil aviation


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US issues advisory related to sanctions and AML/CTF compliance

Managing risk related to sanctions and rising tensions between the U.S. and Iran presents an ongoing challenge to financial institutions. In recent Risk and Compliance news, the U.S. Treasury warned companies doing business with Iran’s civil-aviation industry.

The Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) warned against what it termed “deceptive practices” related to supporting terror activities. According to the OFAC advisory, “Industry parties who engage in or support unauthorized transfers of U.S.-origin aircraft or related goods, technology, or services to Iran, or who conduct business with designated Iranian airlines, risk OFAC enforcement or sanctions actions.”

“Persons considering continued aviation business with Iran need to understand the role that many Iranian commercial airlines play in supporting the Iranian regime’s efforts to foment regional violence through terrorism, its weapons programs, and other destabilizing activity to include exploiting its own people through brutal human rights abuses against women, political opponents, and others,” the advisory reads. “Iran has routinely relied upon Iranian commercial airlines to fly fighters and materiel to international locations in furtherance of Iranian state-sponsored terror operations.”

OFAC names several civil-aviation enterprises, including Mahan Air, which it had previously designated for its use in terror-related transportation services.

Sanctionable activities in support of U.S.-designated civil-aviation firms serving Iran , according to the advisory, may include the following:

  • Financial services
  • Reservations and ticketing
  • Freight booking and handling
  • Procurement of aircraft parts and
  • Airline ground services
  • Catering
  • Interline transfer and codeshare agreements
  • Refueling contracts equipment
  • Maintenance

For extensive detail on U.S. designations and concerns related to this matter, read the U.S. Treasury document here.


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