The US House of Representatives passed legislation to require Treasury Department officials to report to Congress about purchases of American aircraft by the Iranian Regime, including how the sales were financed and that the sales would not help to Regime to supply weapons to terrorist groups across the Middle East.
The bill, passed on Thursday, December 14, is a further effort by US lawmakers to demonstrate how the sale of aircraft to the Iranian Regime may aid terrorist activity in the Middle East and beyond.
The bill passed 252-167, with the support of all but four Republicans, along with 23 Democrats.
The debate over this bill centred around whether or not this legislation would violate American commitments under the Iran nuclear deal of 2015, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.
Those in favour of the bill emphasised that aircraft sales to Iran were not being banned, but simply monitored closely by the Treasury Department.
Representative Roger Williams (Texas) said: “Every six months, Treasury would need to certify to us that financed authorizations would not benefit an Iranian person that is transporting items for the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction or providing transportation for sanctioned entities.”
He continued: “[The] Treasury would also have to certify to us that those authorizations don’t pose a significant money laundering or terrorism finance risk to the US financial system and that any banks engaging in this business have appropriate due diligence procedures in place.”
Some in the House feared that the bill would cause Iran to walk away from the nuclear agreement but these comments were derided by proponents of the bill.
House Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling, a representative from Texas, said: “If my friends who oppose this bill don’t care enough to even request the information from the executive branch, especially information that may reveal the use of their constituents’ bank deposits for the benefit of terrorism … that is a sad day for congressional oversight and a sad day for the United States Congress.”
Indeed, the effect of this law will probably be most practically felt in the courts rather than the national security arena. It could even create a way for victims of Iranian terrorism to collect some of the money owed to them- in total more than $43 billion.
One Middle East foreign policy expert said: “By identifying the financiers of the sale it helps them identify where they can swoop in and potentially seize assets (which is to say, seize the planes), and then sell them in order to get some of the compensation they deserve.”
Source » ncr-iran