Administration Must Act Quickly on New Authorities and Information to Tighten Sanctions on Iran, Focusing on Iran's Currency, Ros-Lehtinen Says
(WASHINGTON) – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, today issued the following statement on the Administration’s release of two reports required by H.R. 1905, the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012. These reports discuss Iran’s natural gas sector and efforts by the Treasury Secretary to end certain financial services to Iranian-linked financial institutions. They also include a list of all persons the Secretary has identified who provide certain financial services to the Government of Iran. The Administration provided that list of individuals in classified form as part of the report issued this week. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
“There is a golden opportunity for the Administration to capitalize on the Iranian regime’s weaknesses, bring overwhelming pressure to bear, and successfully confront the Iranian threat. But, it may squander it if it does not act quickly in using the new tools at its disposal.
“The regime’s ability to fund its nuclear program and extremist activities would be severely damaged through the full implementation of the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act, including prohibiting the repatriation of Iranian currency. Iran’s currency is already plummeting and now is our chance to deal a decisive blow to this nefarious regime before it has the chance to regain its footing. President Obama should also waste no time in expanding current sanctions involving financial transactions and including activities in the natural gas sector.
“The Administration must not wait any longer to impose these crippling sanctions as the regime moves closer every day to achieving its goal of obtaining nuclear weapons.”
NOTE: H.R. 1905, authored by Ros-Lehtinen was overwhelmingly passed by the House and Senate on August 1, and signed into law by President Obama on August 10, 2012.