The departments of State and Treasury designated two senior Iranian officials as human rights abusers Wednesday, saying they are "responsible for or complicit in serious human rights abuses in Iran since the June 2009 disputed presidential election."
The designations, falling under an executive order signed by President Obama in September, targets Tehran Prosecutor General Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi and Mohammed Reza Naqdi, who leads the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps' Basij Forces.
Any U.S. assets tied to the men are frozen by the designation, and people in the United States are prohibited from doing any business with them.
"Dolatabadi and Naqdi have no place in the international financial system," said Adam J. Szubin, director of Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control.
Naqdi led the Basij intelligence unit before becoming its overall commander. At least three people died in his unit's custody at the Kahizarak detention center in a crackdown against protesters after Iran's disputed 2009 elections, the Treasury statement said. "Naqdi extracted forced confessions from high-ranking reformist leaders that were broadcast on Iranian state-run television," the statement said.
Naqdi was in command of the Basij during a December 2009 protest on Ashura Day, in which 15 people were killed and hundreds more were arrested.
Dolatabadi's office then indicted many of those arrested on Ashura Day on a charge of "enmity against God, which carries a death sentence, and denied due process to those facing the death sentence," the statement said.
The executive order was a direct response to Iran's crackdown on protesters. Eight Iranian officials were designated when the order was signed Sept. 29.