(Photo Credit: Xinjiang Police Files)
German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock announced that her country and the European Union (EU) are examining how to include the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) on the list of terrorist organizations.
“I said clearly last week that we are preparing a new sanctions package and how we can designate the IRGC as a terrorist organization,” Baerbock told ARD TV channel on Sunday.
These comments by Germany come a day after IRGC commander Hossein Salami warned university students to stop their protests, telling them to “not go out into the streets,” according to IRNA.
In response to Baerbock’s comments, the spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry, Nasser Kanaani, called on Berlin “not to sacrifice its interests with Tehran for short-term political goals.”
He said, “The Iranian Revolutionary Guard is considered an Iranian official military institution, and any move to impose sanctions on it by Germany or put it on the terrorist list is considered an illegal and non-constructive measure.”
Protests across Iran have entered their seventh week, as the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini sparked nationwide protests across the Islamic Republic. However, many of the peaceful demonstrations quickly turned violent, resulting in clashes between rioters and security forces, and an increase in terror attacks. A lot of the rallies are pro-government, condemning the riots as well as the violence that has accompanied them.
The Iranian Foreign Ministry also issued a statement on 26 September, imposing sanctions on institutions and individuals in the EU “for their destructive role” in supporting terrorist groups during the recent riots in Iran.
Among those sanctioned is the Deutsche Welle network in Farsi, the editor-in-chief of the German newspaper Bild, and members of the European Parliament.
Furthermore, Tehran had imposed sanctions on 13 other individuals and seven UK-based institutions, including Iran International and Persian-Language BBC, for promoting anti-government rhetoric.
The blacklisting of the IRGC by the US State Department in the past has become one of the critical topics among the issues in the negotiations to revive the nuclear agreement.
Despite the insistence of Iranian officials, Joe Biden’s government officials announced that the IRGC would not be removed from this list.
Negotiations to revive the nuclear deal have stalled since Iran’s second response to the text proposed by the EU. According to the German Minister, there are no negotiations on this matter now.