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Canada adds Iran's Revolutionary Guard to its list of terrorist groups

The Government of Justin Trudeau argued its decision based on the links it has with Hamas and Hezbollah and the continued violations of the human rights of Iranians.

Justin Trudeau, primer ministro de Canadá.

(SOPA Images/SIPA/2402261633/Cordon Press)

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The Government of Justin Trudeau added the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps of Iran (IRGC) to its list of terrorist groups included in the Canadian criminal code, citing its links with other terrorist organizations such as Hamas and Hezbollah and for violating the human rights of the Iranians.

"Based on their actions, there are reasonable grounds to believe that the IRGC has knowingly carried out, attempted to carry out, participated in or facilitated terrorist activity, or has knowingly acted on behalf of, at the direction of, or in association with an entity that has knowingly carried out terrorist activity. Listing the IRGC means that they are a terrorist group," the Trudeau Administration reported in a statement.

"The decision to list the IRGC through the Criminal Code listing regime sends a strong message that Canada will use all tools at its disposal to combat the terrorist activity of the IRGC, conducted both unilaterally and in knowing association with listed terrorist entities such as Hizballah and Hamas," he continued.

The person in charge of making official the enlistment of the IRGC on the list of terrorist organizations was the Minister of Public Security, Democratic Institutions and Intergovernmental Affairs, Dominic LeBlanc:

Our Government announced the listing of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist entity under Canada’s Criminal Code. The Iranian regime has consistently displayed a complete disregard for human rights, both inside and outside Iran, as well as a willingness to destabilize the international rules-based order. Our government will always promote human rights and take action against those seeking to disrupt our way of life, here in Canada and around the world.

It is not the first measure that Canada has taken against Iran. At the end of 2022, the country "designated the Islamic Republic of Iran as a regime that has engaged in terrorism and systematic or serious violations of human rights," but not before having financially sanctioned on 18 occasions 200 individuals and 250 related entities with the Iranian regime.

Canada, in the footsteps of the US and the EU

In April 2019, under President Donald Trump, the White House added the IRGC to the list of terrorist entities: "This designation will be the first time that the United States has ever named a part of another government as an FTO. It underscores the fact that Iran’s actions are fundamentally different from those of other governments. This action will significantly expand the scope and scale of our maximum pressure on the Iranian regime. It makes crystal clear the risks of conducting business with, or providing support to, the IRGC. If you are doing business with the IRGC, you will be bankrolling terrorism."

Four years later, it was the European Union (EU) that included the IRGC on its terrorism list after its "brutal repression" against Iranians:

The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has been responsible for leading the brutal crackdown against peaceful protests led by Iranian citizens. It has also been behind various terrorist plots on European soil and further afield. In January and July 2023, Parliament voted overwhelmingly to have the IRGC listed as a banned terrorist organization.