OAN’s Abril Elfi
6:04 PM – Thursday, October 12, 2023
The United States and Qatar have come to an agreement and decided to block Iran from accessing the $6 billion fund that was recently unfrozen.
Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo told House Democrats on Thursday that both the U.S. and Qatari governments agreed to deny Iran access to the six billion fund that they gained as a part of a prisoner swap deal with President Joe Biden last month.
According to a witness, Adeyemo did not give a timeframe of how long the funds will be blocked.
As U.S. authorities continue to investigate whether Iran had any direct involvement in Hamas’ terrorist attack on Israel, the administration has received bipartisan pressure to deny Iran’s access to the funds.
According to the Biden administration, Tehran could only utilize the $6 billion for humanitarian purposes.
Administration officials had stated that Iran could reportedly only access the money through a series of steps, including oversight by the Treasury Department.
They also stated that Iran has not touched any of the money in recent days, and the U.S. might re-freeze it at any time. However, there was increasing pressure on the White House to convey a louder statement that Iran would not be able to access the funds.
Critics of the White House’s plan to grant Iran access to the $6 billion have said that the money is fungible and that whatever dollars Iran receives, regardless of whether they are for humanitarian purposes, will free up additional funds for terrorism.
Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) had posted on X, the social media formerly known as Twitter, that she wanted a “formal agreement” between the governments to free the funds.
It’s unclear how preventing Iran from accessing the $6 billion will influence the administration’s ability to strike future arrangements to free other unfairly held Americans.
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