Senate Overwhelmingly Adopts Legislation Targeting Iran’s Dangerous Behavior

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June 15, 2017
Senate Overwhelmingly Adopts Legislation Targeting Iran’s
Dangerous Behavior

AIPAC commends the Senate for overwhelmingly adopting bipartisan legislation in a 98-2 vote that would impose sanctions targeting Iran’s ballistic missile program, its destabilizing actions in the Middle East, its human rights abuses, and its conventional weapons trade.

Authored by Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC) Chairman Bob Corker (R-TN), Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and SFRC Ranking Member Ben Cardin (D-MD), The Countering Iran’s Destabilizing Activities Act of 2017 (S.722) is directed exclusively at Iran’s non-nuclear regional aggression, and in no way does it violate the letter or spirit of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

The legislation specifically mandates sanctions on persons that engage in any activity that materially contributes to Iran's ballistic missile activity. The mandate includes persons engaged in any efforts to manufacture, acquire, possess, develop, transport, transfer or use ballistic missiles.

The measure also imposes terrorism-related sanctions on Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). The U.S. government has already designated the IRGC’s Quds Force—the organization’s foreign activities branch—as a terrorist group and has sanctioned the IRGC for non-proliferation and human rights abuses.

The bill further mandates sanctions on persons violating the arms embargo placed on Iran by United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231.

Another important provision authorizes the president to impose sanctions on Iranians responsible for human rights violations against those who seek to promote human rights or expose illegal government activity.

Bipartisan legislation has also been introduced in the House that would place new sanctions on Iran’s illicit ballistic missile program and arms transfers. We urge the House to adopt The Iran Ballistic Missiles and International Sanctions Enforcement Act (H.R. 1698), authored by House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) and Ranking Member Eliot Engel (D-NY).

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