ADL Welcomes U.S. Warning Against Business With Iran

Urges Continued Strong Enforcement

New York, NY, January 24, 2014 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today welcomed an important warning by the United States that, despite modest sanctions relaxation, now is not the time to do business with Iran.

ADL called on Secretary of State John Kerry and Treasury Undersecretary David Cohen to amplify that message to U.S. allies and sustain tough U.S. enforcement of existing law.

“We were pleased to see Undersecretary Cohen’s clear warning that now is not the time to engage in business with Iran,” said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director.  “This is a critical moment for the U.S. to continue to back its commitment with sustained action to sanction entities and individuals who are violating current law.

“Proactive enforcement has always been essential in the face of constant efforts to evade sanctions,” added Mr. Foxman.  “Today, it is even more important as the rush to do business with Iran threatens to undermine American efforts.  U.S. leadership on this issue remains critically important.”

Business delegations from a number of Western countries visited Iran as soon as the interim nuclear deal between six world powers and Iran was announced last fall, according to reports in the financial and general news media.  Those reports have raised concerns that, although most sanctions were still in force, a rush for business contact would lessen pressure on Iran to abide by agreements and negotiate seriously. 

The U.S. Treasury Department’s guidance in the implementation of the interim agreement with Iran, known as the Joint Program of Action, made clear that the U.S. retains the authority to impose sanctions during the implementation period. 

“Any agreement now or in the future is more likely to succeed over the long term if the risks of breaching it are spelled out and demonstrated,” said Mr. Foxman. “Our allies and the business community must understand that the U.S. considers any action signaling an erosion of that pressure as undermining those goals.”

ADL is the world’s leading anti-hate organization. Founded in 1913 in response to an escalating climate of anti-Semitism and bigotry, its timeless mission is to protect the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment for all. Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of hate with the same vigor and passion. A global leader in exposing extremism, delivering anti-bias education, and fighting hate online, ADL is the first call when acts of anti-Semitism occur. ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate.