GOP senators have introduced bills calling on President Biden to freeze $6 billion in Iranian funds. The money in question was released to Iran as part of a prisoner exchange deal last month, and the Republican senators argue that it could be used by Iran to fund terrorism or other destabilizing activities.
The bills introduced by the GOP senators include:
- The Iran Nuclear Deal Abrogation Act of 2023, which would reimpose all sanctions that were lifted under the Iran nuclear deal.
- The Iranian Regime Disarmament Act of 2023, which would require the Biden administration to impose new sanctions on Iran until it dismantles its nuclear program and ceases its support for terrorism.
- The Iranian Funds Freeze Act of 2023, which would specifically freeze the $6 billion in Iranian funds that were released as part of the prisoner exchange deal.
It is unclear whether any of these bills will be passed by the Senate, as Democrats hold a narrow majority in the chamber. However, the introduction of the bills is a sign of the growing opposition among Republicans to the Biden administration's Iran policy.
The Biden administration has defended its decision to release the $6 billion to Iran, arguing that it was necessary to secure the release of the five American prisoners. The administration has also said that the money will be used for humanitarian purposes only. However, some critics have argued that it is difficult to ensure that the money will not be diverted to other purposes, given Iran's history of supporting terrorism.
The debate over the $6 billion in Iranian funds is likely to continue in the coming weeks and months. It is a complex issue with no easy answers, and it is one that is likely to be a source of tension between the Biden administration and Congress.
To learn more about read this article from Fox News. An excerpt of the article has been copied below:
Calls from Capitol Hill lawmakers to freeze the $6 billion in Iranian funds reached through controversial negotiations increased this week.
Nearly 20 GOP senators are calling on the Biden administration to freeze the funds that were released to a Qatar account in exchange for five American prisoners last month.
Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., led a group of GOP senators on Tuesday, urging the administration to "limit Iran’s ability to provide support to Hamas."
She blamed President Biden for sending Palestine over $730 million in aid since taking office through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees.
"And yesterday, we learned Hamas stole aid from that group," Blackburn said. "I'll be introducing legislation to halt all funding for them until Iran is expelled from the UN and investigated for violations."