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Biden admin, on solemn day of 9-11, lifts sanction threat against banks holding billions for Iran


The Biden administration has reportedly authorized the transfer of $6 billion in Iranian funds from South Korea to Qatar. This decision is part of an agreement with Tehran to secure the release of five American prisoners. A notification obtained by the Associated Press reveals that the administration approved sanction waivers for the transfer last week. The prisoners could potentially be released as early as next week.


To facilitate their release, the United States has committed to freeing five Iranian nationals currently held in the country. Additionally, the transfer of approximately $6 billion in restricted Iranian funds held in South Korea to restricted accounts in Qatar has been permitted.

According to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, the decision to waive the imposition of sanctions is based on the determination that it is in the national security interest of the United States. This waiver applies to foreign financial institutions under the primary jurisdiction of Germany, Ireland, Qatar, the Republic of Korea, and Switzerland. These institutions will be notified directly in writing by the U.S. government, enabling them to engage in transactions occurring on or after August 9, 2023.


However, some concerns have been raised by Democrat Senator Bob Menendez from New Jersey. He is worried that this deal might encourage foreign powers to take more American hostages. He emphasizes the need to clearly communicate to Americans that they should avoid traveling to certain regions where the risk of becoming a hostage is significant. Addressing this issue is crucial to prevent future circumstances like these, according to Senator Menendez.


Republicans will criticize this deal, as they have previously voiced their disapproval of the administration's handling of similar agreements to secure the release of Americans from hostile nations. One notable example is the trade of convicted arms dealer Viktor Bout for WNBA star Brittney Griner, which drew significant backlash. Many questioned why the administration did not negotiate the release of ex-Marine Paul Whelan, who had been in Russian custody for a much longer period.

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Valerie Porizek
Valerie Porizek
Sep 19, 2023

Embarrassed with this man. How bad does it need to get?

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