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UPDATE 1-Canada to ban Iran's IRGC leaders from entry, expand sanctions

(Adds details; changes media label, previously IRAN-NUCLEAR/CANADA-IRGC)

Oct 7 (Reuters) - Canada on Friday increased pressure on Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards Corp (IRGC), saying it would ban the top 50% of its leaders from entering the country and promising stepped-up sanctions.

Iran has faced increasing international pressure amid nationwide protests following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in the custody of morality police.

Canada plans to expand targeted sanctions measures, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland announced at a news conference on Friday.

"The IRGC is a terrorist organization," said Freeland.

The IRGC, a powerful faction that controls a business empire as well as elite armed and intelligence forces in Iran, has been accused by Western nations of carrying out a global terrorist campaign. Iran rejects that. Ottawa is still pressuring Iran over an Ukrainian International Airlines plane that was shot down in January 2020. As many as 138 of the 176 people killed on the flight had ties to Canada. (Reporting by Costas Pitas in Los Angeles and Steve Scherer in Ottawa; Editing by Tim Ahmann)