US allows exporting computer equipment to Iran (again)

The US has lifted the ban on exporting computer equipment to Iran - so long as the technology in question is heading to individuals, and not the Iranian government.

The ban has been in place for over a decade and lifted after a statement from the Treasury Department accusing Iran of trying to “silence its people by cutting off their communication with each other and the rest of the world."

A list known as the SDN or “Specially Designated Nationals” contains individuals and groups which remain banned from doing any form of business or sales with; including extremist organisations such as Al-Qaeda.

Although diplomatic restrictions have been cut-off for nearly 30 years, extra sanctions have been in place as of late for Iran’s controversial nuclear program.

These increased sanctions could be the reason Samsung has had to cut off access to its mobile app store in the country.

As part of an attempt to free the speech of the people around government blocks; communications software such as VPN (virtual private network) services will now be allowed to be sold.

The National Iranian American Council (NIAC) supports the lifting of the ban.

In a statement, Jamal Abdi, policy director of the NIAC says: "There was no better example of sanctions that undermined human rights and civil society efforts of Iranians, and helped the regime."

Although this move may increase political tensions by the Iranian government, the people under regime are sure to be thankful of their new potential increased voice and freedom.

Do you think this is a good move by the Treasury? Or could it have consequences increasing tension between the U.S and Iranian governments?

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