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Australia Imposes Myanmar, Iran Sanctions  

Britain's Foreign Secretary James Cleverly welcomes Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs Penny Wong, left, at Carlton Gardens in London, ahead of their bilateral meeting, Feb. 1, 2023.

Australia Tuesday announced more sanctions against Myanmar and Iran. Foreign Affairs Minister Penny Wong said repression and violence forced the government to act.

Australia joins the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom in imposing new sanctions on Myanmar. Analysts say the measures add to the pressure on Myanmar’s military authorities two years after it overthrew the civilian government effectively led by Aung San Suu Kyi, who has since been jailed.

Australia will target several members of Myanmar’s governing State Administration Council and two army-run corporations.

Speaking to reporters in London Tuesday, Australian Foreign Affairs Minister Penny Wong said the measures were a response to the crushing of dissent in Myanmar.

“After careful deliberation and consultation, Australia is imposing additional autonomous sanctions on those directly responsible for the military coup and ongoing repression and violence. This included targeted financial sanctions and travel bans on 16 individuals who are key figures in the military regime and targeted financial sanctions on two military-controlled entities,” she said.

Canberra has also imposed sanctions on 16 Iranian law enforcement, political and military officials. Australia has also followed other Western countries in launching targeted financial penalties against four Iranian individuals and four companies that make or sell drones to Russia, which are believed to have been used against Ukrainian civilians and infrastructure.

The European Union and Britain are reportedly considering whether to declare Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, the organization that enforces the government’s policies, to be an extremist organization.

Wong said the Myanmar sanctions would stay in place until Canberra sees “improvements for people on the ground and moves towards the restoration of democracy.”