Pompeo hits Iran, China, Cuba in last-minute sanctions push

Days before leaving office, US punishes Chinese steel company and UAE-based building materials firm for working with Iran Shipping Lines

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo takes part in a security briefing on Mount Bental in the Golan Heights, near Merom Golan on the border with Syria, on November 19, 2020. (Patrick Semansky/Pool/AFP)

WASHINGTON — US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday imposed sanctions on three of his primary targets — China, Iran and Cuba — in a last-minute push aimed in part at boxing in President-elect Joe Biden.

Five days before he turns in his keys at the State Department, Pompeo vowed to punish China over its clampdown in Hong Kong — a stance backed by Biden — but moved further away from Biden’s goal of easing tensions with Iran and Cuba.

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