Sanctions against Iran's economy have failed to quench the country's nuclear weapons ambitions, officials in President Barack Obama's administration acknowledge.
But the administration hopes that more of the same will do the trick, The Hill reports
"We have not yet achieved the objective, which is to change the Iranian government's calculus," David Cohen, Treasury Department undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, told the Senate Banking Committee in testimony Tuesday.
The Treasury Department announced new sanctions the same day against 37 businesses controlled by the Iran government, The Hill reports. The department says the companies are fronts that have brought the government tens of billions of dollars.
"It is our hope that in exposing this network of front companies that generates enormous profits for the Iranian regime and operates under the direction of the supreme leader's office, we will advance our efforts to gain the attention of those who hold the nuclear file," Cohen said.
Iran holds elections June 14 to replace President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The most powerful candidates are hard-liners who owe their allegiance to Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. He has final say over the country's nuclear program.
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