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Wednesday, June 29th, 2022

Reps. Bishop, Conaway seek information on how Iran used sanctions relief

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U.S. Reps. Mike Bishop (R-MI) and Mike Conaway (R-TX) introduced a bill to require the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) to submit a report to Congress on Iran’s use of assets received from sanctions relief.

The bill, the Iran Payments Accountability Act of 2018 (H.R. 6774), states that the report must also include whether the assets were utilized to sponsor terrorist organizations, including Hamas and Hezbollah, fund military operations in Syria, facilitate illicit narcotics operations, or attack U.S. nationals, or members of the U.S. Armed Forces. If so, the bill would require the Secretary of State to demand the repayment of these U.S. funds through any means necessary, including through the imposition of new or increased sanctions.

International economic sanctions on Iran were lifted in July 2015 when the United States, Russia, France, China, the United Kingdom, Germany, and the European Union agreed to a 10-year deal that called for Iran to de-nuclearize.

The bill also seeks information on a $1.7 billion cash settlement with Iran.

“The Obama Administration delivered $1.7 billion, along with billions of dollars in sanctions relief, to the Iranian regime – the world’s foremost state sponsor of terrorism,” Bishop said. “My constituents, and Americans across the nation, have every right to know how and where these dollars were used. Specifically, the American people have a right to know if these funds were used to foment terrorism, military activity, or other criminal acts. That’s why I introduced the Iran Payments Accountability Act to provide transparency and empower the State Department to secure repayment from Iran if these funds are traced to terrorist organizations or illicit activities.”