Tags: Ed Royce | Bill | Cash Payments | Iran | Shut Down

Ed Royce: Bill Vital for Shutting Down Cash Payments to Iran

(Fox News/"America's Newsroom")

By    |   Thursday, 22 Sep 2016 01:55 PM

A bill that passed through the House Foreign Relations Committee Wednesday is a vital key for shutting down the transfer of cash payments to Iran, said Chairman Ed Royce on Thursday, noting that the United States has sent three such payments, to the tune of $1.7 billion, to the Middle Eastern stronghold.

"We don't know where those planes, those Iranian planes took off to in terms of this cash," the California Republican told Fox News' Bill Hemmer on the "America's Newsroom" program.

"This says we are putting an end to it, and we are not going to do what the Justice Department said don't do. The Justice Department said do not pay ransom, because if you do, they will take more American hostages."

Royce noted that Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Wednesday night that he is "looking forward to receiving more money from the United States as a result of past disputes," and that means the Iranian government has figured out "that this pressure pays."

The issue came to a head earlier this year, after $400 million in cash was transferred to Iran upon the release of four hostages. The Obama administration said the money was the agreed-upon settlement for a past debt, but it was widely seen as paying ransom to Iran, a state sponsor of terror.

"What they wanted is the payment in cash, and we have got to shut that down, because Iran is the foremost state sponsor of terror whether it's Hamas, Hezbollah, or what's going on in Syria," said Royce.

He told the program he spoke with one of the hostages, who told him they were told they would not be leaving "unless that plane with cash landed."

"I think the way this began was a discussion of a transfer of nine Iranian spies and prisoners or people that have been convicted of crimes held here in exchange for four American hostages," said Royce.

"But somehow, along the way, it looks like Iran decided that they wanted a cash payment. The reason I suspect that that's exactly how it developed was because the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps announced they were going to get a money exchange for the hostages. When it comes to dealing with Iran, we need a policy of more backbone, not more backing down."

President Barack Obama plans to veto both the cash payments bill and another one requiring public disclosure of assets of Iranian leaders, including the ayatollah.

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A bill that passed through the House Foreign Relations Committee Wednesday is a vital key for shutting down the transfer of cash payments to Iran, said Chairman Ed Royce on Thursday...
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Thursday, 22 Sep 2016 01:55 PM
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