Tuesday's Iran Mini Report - April 23, 2019

• U.S. Officials React to Iran Regime’s Threat to Close Hormuz, Assure Market of Continued Supply

U.S. officials have strongly responded to IRGC Naval Force Commander's threat about closing the strait of Hormuz if Iran cannot ship its oil through the strategic waterway.

A senior U.S. official who spoke on the condition of anonymity told reporters in Washington on Monday April 22 that any move by Iran to close the strategic Strait of Hormuz in response to the United States ending waivers for purchases of Iranian oil would be unjustified and unacceptable.

• U.S. Will Not Reissue Waivers for Iran Oil Imports -White House

The United States on Monday said it will eliminate in May all waivers granted to eight economies allowing them to buy Iranian oil without facing U.S. sanctions, as it ratcheted up pressure to choke off all oil revenues of the Islamic Republic.

Maryam Rajavi said in a tweet, oil embargo and blacklisting of the IRGC must be complemented by other measures, including recognition of the right of the Iranian people and Resistance to overthrow the religious dictatorship, designating other elements of repression in Iran, and expelling agents of the regime’s Intelligence Ministry and IRGC from the US and Europe.

• Sen. Cruz applauds Trump’s decision to end Iran oil waivers

US Sen. Ted Cruz issued a statement applauding the Trump administration’s decision to end oil waivers for Iran.

the Texas Republican said: "I applaud President Trump and Secretary of State Pompeo for announcing this morning that the Trump administration will finally end oil waivers for Iran. This decision will deprive the Ayatollahs of billions of dollars that they would have spent undermining the security of the United States and our allies, building up Iran's nuclear and ballistic missile programs, and financing global terrorism,”.

• US Offers $10 Million Reward for Information on Hezbollah Finances

The United States is offering a reward of up to $10 million for information that disrupts the finances of Lebanon's Hezbollah militant organization.

The U.S. State Department announced the award Monday, saying it would be paid to those who give information about major Hezbollah donors and financiers as well as businesses that support the organization and banks that facilitate the group's transactions.

The payments will be made by the State Department's Rewards for Justice program, which until now has focused on offering cash rewards for information that leads to the capture of wanted terrorists.

The Shi'ite group, backed by Iran, was designated as a foreign terrorist organization by the State Department in 1997.

• Court of Appeal Upholds Deportation of Human Rights Attorney Mohammad Najafi

An appeals court upheld a 13-year prison sentence of human rights attorney Mohammad Najafi who was jailed in 2018 after voicing support for people detained during anti-government protests, the state-run IRNA news agency reported on Sunday, Aril 14, 2019.

Mohammad Najafi was sentenced in December to 10 years for “conveying information to a hostile country” through interviews with foreign media, two years for insulting the supreme leader and one year for publicly supporting opposition groups.