The United States on Thursday announced more sanctions against people and firms associated with Iran and with what it said was an illicit banking network used to conceal transactions.

The U.S. said it placed the penalties on 39 firms linked to a shadow banking system that helped to obfuscate financial activity between sanctioned Iranian firms and their foreign buyers, namely for petrochemicals produced in Iran.

The Treasury Department said the companies — from Hong Kong to the United Arab Emirates — made up a “significant ‘shadow banking’ network” that gave cover to sanctioned Iranian entities to disguise petrochemical sales with foreign customers.

“Today’s action demonstrates the United States’ commitment to enforcing our sanctions and our ability to disrupt Iran’s foreign financial networks, which it uses to launder funds,” Treasury Deputy Secretary Wally Adeyemo said.

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