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Iran Sanctions and Activities of Privately Funded Actors in Iran

Department of State Establishes Policy to Encourage Non-Governmental Organizations to Apply for an Office of Foreign Assets Control License to Work in Iran

Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs
Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor
Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs
Established June 23, 2006

Current U.S. economic sanctions on Iran prohibit most unlicensed transactions by U.S. persons or in the U.S. involving Iran. These sanctions, set forth in the Iranian Transactions Regulations, 31 C.F.R. Part 560 (the ITR), are administered and enforced by the Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). See the OFAC website for a brochure describing the sanctions and for a link to the ITR.

Iran is one of the great threats to international peace in the world today. Iran's attempts to create a nuclear weapons capability, its sponsorship of terrorist groups in the Middle East, and its atrocious human rights record make it one of the most urgent concerns for American foreign policy. Sanctions are an expression of American resolve to isolate the Government of Iran, increase diplomatic pressure and convince Iran to reverse its nuclear ambitions.

While the United States is actively confronting the aggressive policies of the Iranian regime, we are equally committed to providing support for the Iranian people and their aspirations for freedom in their own country. These goals would be advanced by the assistance of privately funded non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and privately funded individuals/entities working on projects targeted to benefit the Iranian people, inside and outside Iran. For this reason, OFAC has issued a Statement of Licensing Policy setting out the types of activities that they will consider licensing, including: conferences and training programs aimed at improving democracy and human rights; educational, sports and cultural exchanges; and independent media and environmental programs designed to directly benefit the Iranian people.

The USG encourages NGOs and other privately funded individuals/entities to apply to OFAC for a specific license to engage in the types of activities described in OFAC's Statement of Licensing Policy. It is important to note that, while the USG supports these types of privately funded activities, each license application will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

Should you have any questions, please contact OFAC's Licensing Division at (202) 622-2480.


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