UAE says sanctioned exchange houses not linked to Iran crackdown

ABU DHABI: The United Arab Emirates’ decision to punish seven currency exchange houses is unrelated to a crackdown on a network funnelling illicit funds to Iran, the UAE central bank said on Sunday.

“The seven exchange houses had their licences downgraded because they were found to be in violation of central bank regulations, including anti-money laundering regulations, and then failed to regularise their status during a grace period,” a central bank statement to Reuters said.

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It added that the downgrade, originally announced in June, was not linked to a disclosure by Washington that the United States and the UAE had disrupted a currency exchange network transferring funds to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards.

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