Biden Admin Moving Forward With Iran Deal

Biden Admin Reaches Agreement With Iran

( – In 1980, the United States severed diplomatic ties with the Islamic Republica of Iran after the country took over the American Embassy the year before. The country is well-known for allegations that it supports terrorism and the Bureau of Consular Affairs at the US Department of State has a standing advisory warning Americans not to travel to the nation. Still, a handful of Americans are imprisoned in the country, and the Biden Administration recently made a deal to set them free.

On September 11, The Associated Press reported that the administration is advancing a deal with Iran for the release of five US citizens from custody. Last week, Secretary of State Antony Blinken signed off on sanctions waivers to allow the transfer of $6 billion of Iranian assets frozen in a bank in South Korea to Qatar. In exchange, Iran will release the Americans. Also, as part of the deal, the US will release five Iranian citizens currently held in the United States.

According to Fox News, none of the $6 billion is coming from US taxpayers or going directly to Iran. National Security Council Spokesperson Adrienne Watson said the step was necessary to assure the countries involved in the transfer that their participation would not violate US sanctions.

Watson said the funds are only allowed for “humanitarian” uses like food and medicine at the direction of officials from Qatar. She also said Congress has been aware of the ongoing process throughout. The State Department said the funds would be of little benefit to Iran.

Republicans in Congress and others are not happy about the deal. They claim the Biden administration is rewarding the Middle Eastern country for putting Americans in prison. Some legislators worry the move will encourage Iran to detain more US citizens. In a Twitter post, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) equated the action with blackmail, accusing the administration of “indirectly financ[ing] … terrorism.” Supporters of the deal feel the White House is making the right move to bring Americans home.

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