Al-Quds Day rally in Tehran, Iran
Al-Quds Day rally in Tehran, IranMorteza Nikoubazl via Reuters Connect

According to a report by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) which was published by Fox News, Iran has generated a massive windfall of up to $15.7 billion since 1979 for illegally seizing American hostages as part of a hostage policy.

MEMRI quoted an Iranian security official who said earlier this year: "This exchange operation is in fact one of the most successful and effective negotiation [efforts] ever to happen to the Islamic Republic of Iran. In essence, we released a few Iranian prisoners in exchange for some prisoners whose sentences were about to end, and, on the other hand, we succeeded in releasing billions of dollars of our blocked resources without committing to anything else."

In a statement to Fox News Digital last week, a State Department spokesperson said: "These funds will be moved to restricted accounts in Qatar, and the United States will have oversight as to how and when these funds are used. It is longstanding U.S. policy to ensure our sanctions do not prevent food, medicine, and other humanitarian goods and services from flowing to ordinary people, no matter how objectionable their governments."