US government sued over Iran nuclear deal

Victims of alleged Iran-sponsored terror sue Obama administration to keep sanctions in place

US government sued over Iran nuclear deal

World Bulletin / News Desk

A group of U.S. citizens sued the Obama administration Wednesday over the recently signed Iran nuclear deal.

The lawsuit, filed by individuals who won more than $1.5 billion in judgments against Iran for its alleged support to militant groups, says the plaintiffs "will lose their last remaining opportunity to pressure Iran to satisfy their judgments" if the deal was implemented.

In Washington, the State Department denied that there was any tie between the judgment's ruling and the Iran accord.

"There's no connection, absolutely no connection, between any sanctions relief that Iran would receive under the JCPOA away if it meets the nuclear commitments under the deal, and any outstanding court judgments," spokesman Mark Toner said, referring to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

"The funds that would be released as part of the JCPOA sanctions relief are funds primarily from Iran's oil sales that have been deposited into restricted accounts. And the U.S. does not hold or control any of this money, so it's a separate issue," he added.

Last month, Iran and six world powers signed an agreement in Vienna that closed nearly two years of contentious talks that focused on providing Tehran with sanctions relief in return for unprecedented curbs and inspections on its nuclear program.

The plaintiffs have not yet received any monetary awards and say as much as $1.5 billion in Iranian assets will be released upon implementation of the agreement, although they "are entitled to enforce their judgments against the blocked or frozen assets of Iran".

The lawsuit says each plaintiff is a victim of a terror attack "carried out through one of [Iran's] terrorist proxies in the Middle East".

The U.S. Congress has until Sept. 17 to endorse or reject the agreement that was reached July 14 between Tehran and the U.N. Security Council's five permanent members -- China, France, Russia, the U.K. and the U.S. -- plus Germany. 

The Obama administration is seeking congressional support, particularly in the Senate, to ensure that lawmakers do not have a two-thirds majority in each congressional chamber to override a potential veto of legislation that undermines the accord.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 07 Ağustos 2015, 11:06