U.S. Treasury Official Who Ramped Up Sanctions on Iran Announces Resignation

Undersecretary Sigal Mandelker played a key role in the Trump administration's 'maximum pressure' policy

Amir Tibon
Amir Tibon
Washington
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
U.S. Treasury Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Sigal Mandelker addresses a press roundtable at the U.S. embassy in Bern, Switzerland September 10, 2019.
U.S. Treasury Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Sigal Mandelker addresses a press roundtable at the U.S. embassy in Bern, Switzerland September 10, 2019.Credit: \ Arnd Wiegmann/ REUTERS
Amir Tibon
Amir Tibon
Washington

WASHINGTON – A U.S. Treasury official responsible for enacting the U.S. President Donald Trump administration's sanctions policy is resigning, at a time when the administration is reconsidering its approach towards Iran.

Sigal Mandelker, the undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence at the Treasury Department, will leave the administration within weeks, according to an official statement released Wednesday.

Mandelker joined the Trump administration in 2017, having previously worked for the Department of Justice under former President George W. Bush.

The official explanation for her departure is a return to the private sector. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that Mandelker had approached him over the summer about her desire to leave.

>> Read more: Report: Macron brokered document between Rohani and Trump, but Iranian president balkedIran may exploit Israel's political instability: How Trump must deter Tehran | Opinion

Mandelker played a key role in the administration's policy of heavily sanctioning Iran, as part of Trump's "maximum pressure" approach to the country.

In recent weeks, indications have arisen that Trump is seeking to end this policy in favor of direct negotiations with Iran. Negotiations almost began last week at the UN General Assembly, but Iranian President Hassan Rohani refused to meet or speak with Trump before the United States would agree to some sanctions relief.

Last month, in the run-up to the Israeli election, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told reporters that Mandelker spoke with him and assured him that despite Trump's attempts to turn over a new leaf with Iran, the pressure on the Islamic Republic would continue.

Netanyahu evoked that conversation in response to media inquiries about Trump's firing of former National Security Adviser John Bolton, who was known for his hawkish line against Iran.

It was not immediately clear on Wednesday what impact Mandelker's departure will have on the United States's attempts to open negotiations with Iran, and on the continuation of the sanctions already in place.

Reuters contributed to this report.

Click the alert icon to follow topics:

Comments

SUBSCRIBERS JOIN THE CONVERSATION FASTER

Automatic approval of subscriber comments.

Subscribe today and save 40%

Already signed up? LOG IN

ICYMI

Soldiers using warfare devices made by the Israeli defense electronics company Elbit Systems.

Russia-Ukraine War Catapults Israeli Arms Industry to Global Stage

Flame and smoke rise during an Israeli air strike, amid Israel-Gaza fighting, in Gaza City August 6, 2022.

Israel Should End Gaza Operation Now, if It Can

Rio. Not all Jewish men wear black hats.

What Does a Jew Look Like? The Brits Don't Seem to Know

Karolina Bielowka.

'My Uncle Told Me, ‘Go on the Trip of Your Life, Go Dig in Israel.’ So I Did'

The replica ship, 'Ma’agan Mikhael II,' sailing from Haifa to Acre in northern Israel.

Replica of 2,400-year-old Ship Solves Ancient Mediterranean Mystery

File photo: Bus operated by Kavim company.

Ultra-Orthodox Extremists Assault Woman for Sitting at Front of Jerusalem Bus