The Treasury Department said on Wednesday that it was imposing sanctions on Zarif for acting on behalf of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
"Javad Zarif implements the
reckless agenda of Iran's Supreme Leader, and is the regime's primary
spokesperson around the world," Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in
brushed off the sanctions on Twitter, saying the US move indicated Washington
saw him as a "threat".
has no effect on me or my family, as I have no property or interest outside of
Iran," he said.
Tensions have escalated between the two countries since US President Donald Trumplast year unilaterally withdrew Washington from a landmark nuclear deal signed between Iran and world powers in 2015. Since then, it has reimposed punishing sanctions on Iran, including measures aimed at slashing its oil exports to zero, as part of a campaign aimed at pressuring Tehran to negotiate a new nuclear deal.
of a direct US-Iranian conflict have risen since May with several suspected
attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf, Iran's downing of a US surveillance drone,
and a plan for US air raids on Iran last month that Trump called off at the