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Iranian banks give Guard the cold shoulder

Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards, champions of a deadly war with Iraq in the 1980s and more recently active in battlefields in Iraq and Syria, have long been big players in the Islamic Republic’s economy.

This month, some of those efforts bore fruit when two Iranian banks refused to do business with Khatam-al Anbia, a construction business linked to the guards, which still face international sanctions despite last year’s nuclear deal.

“The FATF is now a blessing in disguise for Rouhani to further curb the guards,” said a former banking official. Fearing further interference with their business interests, Iran’s hardliners have called for withdrawal from the FATF.