Menendez Hails Passage of Iran Sanctions Legislation

Menendez Hails Passage of Iran Sanctions Legislation

Click Here for Senator Menendez's floor remarks

Washington - U.S. Senator Robert Menendez, a chief architect of Iran sanctions legislation, applauded unanimous passage tonight by the Senate of new, tough economic sanctions to "further tighten the noose on Iran and encourage it to abandon its nuclear program."

"Today the Senate sent a clear message to Iran as it prepares for the P-5+1 talks in Baghdad: Provide a real and verifiable plan for the complete dismantling of your nuclear weapons program, or Washington will further tighten the economic noose," said Menendez. "The Obama Administration is moving toward full implementation of the Menendez-Kirk Central Bank sanctions and the U.S. Congress is ready with additional measures, such as sanctions on the National Iranian Oil Company and on Iranian energy joint ventures that will further isolate the regime."

Menendez added: "Both the White House and Congress are committed to preventing Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons capability. Iran's Supreme Leader has a choice: Either come to Baghdad with a real plan to terminate Iran's nuclear program or we'll make our own plan - through sanctions or other necessary measures -- to ensure that Iran fails to achieve its nuclear ambitions."

Menendez also thanked Majority Leader Harry Reid and Banking Committee Chairman Johnson for their support and leadership, saying "without the commitment of Senators Reid and Johnson we simply would not have passed this bill today."

Highlights of the package, which is based on a bill authored by Menendez and passed in February by the Senate Banking Committee include:

  • Sanctions on NIOC/NITC: Terminates a work-around to the Central Bank sanctions by requiring a determination as to whether the National Iranian Oil Company and National Iranian Tanker Company are agents or affiliates of the IRGC and then imposes sanctions on financial institutions that facilitate transactions with either entity.
  • Sanctions on Satellite Companies: Imposes human rights sanctions on satellite companies that provide satellite services to the Iranian regime, but fail to prevent jamming by Iran of transmissions by other users of the same satellite service company.
  • Sanctions on Financial Messaging Services: Sanctions financial messaging service providers that provide services to sanctioned Iranian financial institutions.
  • Sets Aside Iranian Frozen Assets to Pay Judgments for Terrorist Acts: Makes available for attachment frozen assets of Iran to pay judgments for Iranian acts of terror against American citizens, including the victims of the Marine Corps Barracks bombing in Lebanon in 1983 and the Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia in 1996.
  • Sanctions on Parent Companies for Actions of Foreign Subsidiaries: Imposes liability on parent companies for violations of sanctions by foreign subsidiaries.
  • Sanctions on Energy Joint Ventures with Iran: Sanctions joint ventures with Iran related to the development of petroleum resources established after 2002.