US senators pressed ahead with a new set of tough sanctions against Iran's domestic industries in an effort to cripple the Islamic republic's economy today.
Democratic Senator Bob Menendez and Republican Senator Mark Kirk unveiled a package that would sanction transactions in Iran's energy, port, shipping and shipbuilding sectors.
The legislation also would penalise individuals selling or supplying graphite, aluminum and steel to Iran.
The punitive measures build on the sanctions on Iran's oil industry that the two senators have shepherded through Congress in the past year.
"Our sanctions are having a significant impact, but Iran continues to develop nuclear weapons," Mr Menendez alleged, adding that "we will send a message to Iran that they can't just try to wait us out."
Mr Kirk paradoxically said the measure "will … send a clear message of support to the Iranian people."