The international community has long suspected Iran of trying to develop a nuclear weapon, and the UN Security Council imposed two resolutions on Tehran in an attempt to curtail its activities involving ballistic missiles.
On July 14, Iran and a group of six international mediators – Russia, the United States, China, the United Kingdom, France and Germany – signed an historic deal to guarantee the peaceful nature of Tehran's nuclear activities in exchange for sanctions relief. On January 16, the UN nuclear watchdog confirmed that Iran had met its requirements under the deal, paving the way for sanctions relief.
In January, the US Treasury Department sanctioned 11 entities and individuals, including six Iranians and one Chinese citizen, for their involvement in procurement on behalf of Iran’s ballistic missile program.
The move came after media reports that Iran had tested a surface-to-surface Emad (Pillar) missile in October in violation of a UN Security Council resolution.