Legislation prohibits administration from releasing money until terror victims paid
WASHINGTON D.C. – Rep. Jackie Walorski (IN-02) today voted for an effort she cosponsored to prohibit sanctions relief for Iran unless it first pays the court-ordered damages it owes to terror victims
H.R. 3457, the Justice for Victims of Iranian Terrorism Act, prohibits the president from waiving sanctions pursuant to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action until Iran pays the judgments it owes. The President must certify to Congress that the Government of Iran has paid all its judgments.
“Iran should not have access to sanctions relief from the U.S. until they compensate families who lost loved ones from their heinous terrorist acts,” Walorski said. “With over $40 billion in outstanding judgements to the victims, it’s time for Iran to settle their debt with those who have suffered for far too long.”
H.R. 3457 passed by a vote of 251-173 and now heads to the Senate for further consideration.
The Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) as amended gives U.S. victims of state-sponsored terrorism the ability to bring suit in U.S. courts and collect damages from those states.
Iran has accumulated a debt of $43.5 billion in unpaid damages through more than 80 FSIA cases over the last 15 years, according to the Congressional Research Service.
Among the victims of Iranian terrorism who have been awarded judgments in U.S. courts are victims of the 9/11 attacks, the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing, the 1983 attack on the Beirut Marine barracks, and numerous other bus bombings, suicide attacks, assassinations and hostage takings. All these attacks were linked in court to Iranian support or financing.
Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District in Indiana, where she serves as a member of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, House Armed Services Committee, and House Committee on Agriculture.