Senate Insiders: Obama Admin Lying About Bid to Kill Iran Sanctions

Source: Top Treasury, White House officials tried to dismantle sanctions law
Treasury Under Secretary David Cohen / AP

Senate insiders say that senior Treasury Department officials have been lying for years about their backroom efforts to oppose and dismantle Iran sanctions legislation that ultimately forced Tehran to the bargaining table over its illicit nuclear program.

Senators: Iran-Russia Trade Deal Opens Floodgates for Nuke Materials, Weapons

Experts, lawmakers warn $20B trade deal violates nuke deal
Russian S-300 air defense missile system / AP

Iran and Russia’s recently announced $20 billion oil-for-goods trade deal has sparked concerns that Moscow is seeking to open up a direct line into Tehran for the import of sanctioned nuclear equipment and military hardware, shipments that would flatly violate the terms of the recently inked interim nuclear deal.

Harry Reid Obstructing Vote on Iran Sanctions

McConnell: Reid’s opposition ‘harder to explain with each passing day’
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.)

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s (D., Nev.) ongoing refusal to permit a vote on new Iran sanctions legislation is drawing the ire of the majority of senators who support the bill.

Iran: ‘We Will in No Way, Never, Dismantle’ Nuclear Infrastructure

White House, Iran warn Congress against additional sanctions
Hassan Rouhani / AP

Iran vowed to maintain its nuclear infrastructure and threatened to boost its uranium enrichment capabilities just hours after announcing that it had agreed to a deal to halt some aspects of its contested nuclear program.

Iran to Build Two More Nuclear Plants

Announcement comes hours before U.S. inks agreement
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani

Iranian officials announced the upcoming construction of two new nuclear plants on Saturday, just hours before the United States and Western nations signed a nuclear pact that will allow Iran to continue enriching uranium, the key component in a nuclear weapon.

Shutting Down Tehran

Kirk, Manchin introduce amendment to curtail Iranian access to European Central Bank
Sens. Manchin, Kirk / AP

A bipartisan duo of senators have introduced an amendment aimed at cutting off Iran’s access to a European financial institution that has permitted Tehran to skirt Western economic sanctions.

Treasury to Pressure EU on Hezbollah

Official to push for EU designation of Hezbollah as terrorist group, halt transactions with Iran
ECB / Flickr

A top U.S. Treasury Department official promised Congress his department would pressure the European Union to designate Hezbollah as a terrorist organization and to force European banks to stop ongoing transactions with Iran.