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Former U.S. Official Says Iran Sanction Relief Will Fund Terrorism

Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei / Wikimedia Commons
Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei / Wikimedia Commons

The Biden administration’s nuclear deal with Iran will lift sanctions on the hardline regime’s government organization that funds assassination plots and puts bounties on the country’s political enemies, according to a former U.S. official and Iranian government documents.

As part of the administration’s efforts to secure a revamped version of the 2015 nuclear deal, the United States will unwind sanctions on an Iranian government organization called the 15 Khordad Foundation, which offers bounties for the assassination of Iran’s political enemies. The foundation, for example, is behind the $3.3 million bounty on author Salman Rushdie’s head, which is believed to have in part motivated the attacker who earlier this month stabbed Rushdie 10 times during a public appearance, nearly killing him.

“Biden’s new Iran deal would lift sanctions on the very organizations raising bounties to kill Americans,” said Gabriel Noronha, a former senior Iran adviser at the State Department during the Trump administration and now a distinguished fellow at the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs. “That will help Iran raise the funds to kill American dissidents and officials.”

Noronha confirmed earlier this year with State Department officials that these sanctions will be lifted. Critics of the nuclear deal, including Republicans in Congress, say the Biden administration is incentivizing Iran’s global terror campaign and endangering American assassination targets, including former secretary of state Mike Pompeo and former White House national security adviser John Bolton, who was recently the target of a murder-for-hire plot orchestrated by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC).

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