US official links economic protests in Iran to sanctions

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — A top U.S. official focused on sanctions against Iran has linked American financial pressure on Tehran with ongoing economic protests roiling the country.

Sigal P. Mandelker, the undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence at the U.S. Treasury, declined to comment Thursday when ask if the Trump administration hoped tightening sanctions would spark the Iranian government's overthrow.

However, Mandelker told journalists in Dubai that the U.S. wanted to disrupt the "despicable use of Iranian revenue" across the Mideast.

She said: "You've seen the Iranian people, of course, stand up loudly, at risk of their own lives, shouting in protest about the corruption that's happening within Iran and of course the fact (is) that so much money has gone to support malign activities elsewhere, with very little focus on the economy itself."