Bipartisan, Bicameral Efforts Target Tehran’s Financial Lifeline

Washington, D.C. – Today, Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY), the Committee’s Ranking Member, released the following statement on the mounting bipartisan movement in Congress to further strengthen sanctions against the Iranian regime:

“The Committee will soon consider and pass H.R. 850, the Nuclear Iran Prevention Act of 2013.  This bipartisan legislation, which we introduced in February, now has 315 cosponsors in the House.  Among other things, this bill would strengthen existing sanctions by authorizing the President to restrict significant third-party commercial trade with Iran.  We are also examining other ways to strengthen the overall impact of sanctions on the Iranian regime.  We need crippling sanctions on the books and to have them fully implemented by the Administration.

“Yesterday, a bipartisan group of Senators, led by Senators Kirk and Manchin, introduced promising legislation to block Tehran’s access to overseas foreign currency reserves. We will carefully review this bill with an eye toward incorporating this approach into our own legislation. 

“With Iran’s nuclear program marching steadily forward, we need to work as quickly as possible to eliminate any sources of funding for the regime.  We look forward to passing an Iran sanctions bill in the House to do just that.”

Today, the House Foreign Affairs Committee announced that it will hold a hearing on Wednesday, May 15, “Preventing a Nuclear Iran,” with senior officials from the Department of State and Treasury.