Pompeo says U.S. has expanded scope of Iran metals sanctions

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo prepares to testify during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the State Department's 2021 budget in the Dirksen Senate Office Building in Washington D.C. U.S

Pompeo said these materials are "used in connection with Iran's nuclear, military, or ballistic missile programs".

During the maneuvers that spanned the general area of Hormozgan Province, west of the strategic Hormuz Strait, and the Persian Gulf, the Corps staged "all-out and multi-layer" strikes against the life-size replica of a Nimitz-class U.S. aircraft carrier.

The Iranian manoeuvres were staged amid heightened tensions between Iran and the United States.

The video showed clouds of dust before the missiles streaked into the sky.

The statement did not elaborate on the claim or provide any of the missiles' specifications.

The IRGC hailed "the successful launch of ballistic missiles from the depths of the Earth in a completely camouflaged way" as an "important achievement that could pose serious challenges to enemy intelligence organisations".

The IRGC's Sukhoi-22 fighter jets also destroyed targets on the Farur Island with winged bombs, Tasnim reported, adding that a broad range of smart bombs were dropped to detonate a "hypothetical enemy's targets with great accuracy, as the targets have been designed on a much smaller scale than the actual size".

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The general also said the IRGC forces used a series of "surprising equipment and weapons" in the drills, such as long-range ballistic missiles capable of hitting the intruding naval targets at a far distance.

On Tuesday, CNN reported that following the launch of ballistic missiles by the Corps during the drills, al-Udeid and al-Dhafra, another airbase in the United Arab Emirates, were temporarily put on "high alert" and the American forces deployed there were asked to stay in bunkers.

The development exemplified the administration's "maximum pressure" campaign since withdrawing the USA from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, reimposing sanctions under it, along with enacting new penalties against the regime.

The nations have come to the brink of direct confrontation twice since June 2019, when the Guards shot down a U.S. drone in the Gulf.

Days later, Iran launched a volley of missiles at Iraqi bases housing United States and other coalition troops.

The United States has said that allowing the embargo to expire would cause instability in the Middle East.

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