WASHINGTON - The U.S. Senate today voted 99 to zero to strengthen existing sanctions against Iran and impose new ones aimed at its fuel supplies, sending a strong message that the United States is serious about preventing a nuclear armed Iran. The U.S. House of Representatives is expected to also overwhelmingly approve the enhanced sanctions later this afternoon sending the bill to President Obama to be signed into law.
The Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA) applauds Senators for approving the conference report for the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act. The legislation expands existing sanctions to cover a range of financial institutions and businesses, imposes a broad ban on direct imports from Iran to the United States and exports from the United States to Iran (exempting food and medicines), and directs the Obama administration to freeze the assets of Iranians, including Iran's Revolutionary Guards Corps, who are active in weapons proliferation and terrorism. The bill also provides a much-needed legal framework for governments and other investors to divest their portfolios of foreign companies involved in Iran's energy sector.
Dr. Conrad Giles and Rabbi Steve Gutow, the chair and president respectively of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, released the following statement hailing today's vote as a major step forward in efforts to prevent Iran from continuing its pursuit of nuclear weapons.
"The United States and its allies are at a critical juncture in our efforts to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons capability, and these sanctions will place pressure on the Iranian regime, in a peaceful way, to work with the international community to resolve the current disputes. Today's bipartisan vote demonstrates the continued U.S. commitment to preventing a nuclear armed Iran."
JCPA, a lead advocate within the Jewish community for policies that prevent Iran from continuing its pursuit of nuclear weapons, recently wrote a letter to all members of Congress urging the passage of the Iran Sanctions conference report. To view a copy of the JCPA letter to the House, visit http://bit.ly/9WxF3J.