Stephen M. Greenberg, Chairman and Malcolm Hoenlein, Executive Vice Chairman/CEO of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, on Friday praised the U.S. House of Representatives for approving new sanctions on Hezbollah and Iran.
On Wednesday, the House approved new sanctions on the Hezbollah terrorist group, which is one of Iran's terrorist proxies in the Middle East. Sanctions against Iran for its ballistic missile development and support for Hezbollah were approved a day later.
“We welcome the overwhelming bipartisan majorities in the U.S. House of Representatives supporting adoption of a package of legislation expanding and strengthening sanctions against Iran for its ongoing development of ballistic missile capabilities and against Iran’s terrorist proxy Hezbollah for its increasingly threatening and deadly activities on Israel’s northern border,” said Greenberg and Hoenlein.
“By focusing solely on the dangerous and destabilizing actions of Iran and the terrorist proxies it supports, the legislation provides the U.S. with enhanced tools to deter these activities. The legislation also creates a path for America’s allies and partners to join the effort to curtail Iran’s quest to dominate the region through the use of sophisticated conventional weapons systems and continued financial, technical and material support for Hezbollah and other terrorist groups,” they said.
“The Iran Ballistic Missiles and International Sanctions Enforcement Act, passed today by a vote of 423-2, is an important step toward ending Iran’s ability to fund the development of ballistic missiles designed to carry nuclear armed war heads. The two bills addressing the terrorist activities of Hezbollah and the resolution urging the EU to implement sanctions against terrorists affiliated with Hezbollah and to designate Hezbollah in its entirety as a terrorist organization, were adopted by voice vote. The measures directly target the suppliers of weapons to Hezbollah, the sources of its fundraising and recruiting, its illicit criminal activities around the world, and added sanctions for the barbaric use of civilians as human shields,” continued Greenberg and Hoenlein.
The new sanctions, they pointed out, “will equip the Trump administration with more effective measures to thwart Iran’s hegemonic ambitions in the Middle East and new tools to garner support from U.S. allies and partners in the effort to restore stability to the region.”
“We applaud the leadership of House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) and Ranking Member Eliot Engel (D-NY) for their ongoing efforts to encourage and build bipartisan support for this legislative package and to Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI) and Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) and the bipartisan co-sponsors of the bills they proposed. We hope the Senate will adopt similar measures so there can be rapid implementation of the legislation.”
The sanctions against Iran and Hezbollah come nearly two weeks after President Donald Trump said he would not certify Iran is complying with an international agreement on its nuclear program.
Trump’s action opened a 60-day window for Congress to act to reimpose sanctions on Iran’s nuclear program that were lifted under the agreement, but there has been no move to do so in the House or Senate.
For now, House lawmakers are focusing on clamping down on Iran in other ways such as the Hezbollah and missile-related sanctions.
Hezbollah blasted the sanctions on Thursday, accusing the United States of “interfering in Lebanon's affairs”.
(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)