$6 billion Biden promised to Iran BLOCKED by House in bipartisan vote

The US House of Representatives has blocked the transfer to Iran of frozen funds totaling $6 billion. The money, being held in Qatar, was part of a hostages-for-prisoners swap deal in September. Qatar, the country where the money is being held, as well as the US, halted the transfer of funds after Hamas’ attack on Israel in October.

Iran has been accused of assisting Hamas with the planning of the attack which had been in the works since two years and that it only approved the attack a few weeks before the actual attack. Biden administration said that they didn’t intend to refreeze funds.

The No Funds for Iranian Terrorism Act was passed by the House 307-119. Rep. Michael McCaul, R-TX, backed the bill and spoke on the House floor about how Biden must be held accountable for his bad foreign policy in regards to Iran. He also said that the agreement “incentivizes hostage-taking.”

The bill aims to “freeze certain Iranian funds that are involved in the hostage deal of 2023 between the United States of America and Iran and for other purposes.” This is based on unclassified documents from the US government assessing Iran’s funding of terror, in which it stated: “Iran provided historically up to $100,000,000 annually in combined support for Palestinian terrorist groups including Hamas and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestinian General Command.”

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The US has classified Hamas as a terrorist organization, along with Palestinian Islamic Jihad. The bill also cites National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan’s remarks made on October 10, just days after the attack against Israel.

“Iran has been complicit in the attack on Gaza in a broad way because it has provided the lion’s share of funding to the Hamas military wing, provided capabilities, provided support and maintained contact and engagement with Hamas for years and years,” Sullivan stated.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated that, to date, the government has “not seen any evidence that Iran directed this attack or was behind it.”

In making the hostages-for-prisoners swap deal, with the add-on of $6 billion in frozen funds for Iran, the Biden administration had said that the funds were only to be used for humanitarian endeavours. Even if Iran complied with that condition, adding $6 billion to the humanitarian aid budget would allow them to use it for other purposes.

It is unlikely that the measure will be passed by the US Senate.