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An Update from Washington - Conference Report on Iran Sanctions Passes House and Senate


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Both the House and the Senate voted overwhelmingly last week to put tough new economic sanctions on Iran. H.R. 2194, the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010, aims to strengthen the 1996 Iran Sanctions Act (ISA). I am a co-sponsor of this legislation, and supported it when it first came before the House in December. The President is expected to sign it into law in the coming days.

A nuclear-armed Iran is one of the biggest threats to our national security. This legislation will pose tough new sanctions on Iran and those who financially support its regime. It's important that we take a strong stance against Iran and make it clear we will not tolerate its continued efforts to expand their nuclear program. Our future security, as well as the security of Israel, will benefit from the passage of this legislation. Israel is our strongest ally in the Middle East and one of our closest friends, and anything we can do to support them is a step in the right direction.

Specifically, H.R. 2194 will impose sanctions on foreign companies that assist Iran in developing its energy resources; establish three new sanctions under the ISA, including prohibitions on access to foreign exchange in the U.S., access to the U.S. banking system, and on property transactions in the U.S.; ban U.S. banks from engaging in financial transactions with foreign banks conducting business with the Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC); strengthen the U.S. trade embargo against Iran by codifying longstanding executive orders; and increase the penalties for violations of the sanctions by U.S. entities.

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