Updated: Friday, November 20, 2009

Iranian filmmaker Mohsen Makhmalbaf said on Thursday that US President Barack Obama should increase his public support for Iran’s democratic movement, and intensify sanctions on Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps.

Makhmalbaf, who has become a spokesperson outside of Iran for the main opposition movement, said that the movement supports targeted economic sanctions against Iran’s military apparatus, but not broad sanctions that could affect the Iranian people.

He also called for sanctions against foreign companies, such as Nokia and Siemens, which have sold the Iranian government equipment that can be used to track e-mails and tap phones.

“We need certain sanctions that put pressure on the government but not the people. But they must be done quickly, or they won’t have an impact,” he said during an unofficial visit to Washington, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Makhmalbaf, who was speaking at a lunch hosted by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, rejected proposed US legislation that would target gasoline imports to Iran, saying they would hurt average people.

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