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US to Sanction Foreign Banks That Work With Hezbollah

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The United States Congress passed a bill to restrict the funding of Hezbollah by foreign financial institutions operating in the U.S.

This bill goes further than the sanctions imposed by Hezbollah’s designation as a Foreign Terrorist Organization, which criminalizes “providing material support or resources” to a designated organization.

This bill targets foreign banks that carry out transactions with Hezbollah and imposes U.S.-government sanctions on those institutions. It also targets media outlets that worked with Hezbollah’s Al-Manar TV and begins a process of targeting Hezbollah’s drug-smuggling and human-trafficking networks. 

The Hizballah [sic] Financial International Financing Prevention Act is awaiting the presidential signature. It had bipartisan support and was put forward by Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Marco Rubio (R-FL). It was sponsored by House Foreign Affairs Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA).

The full text of the bill can be found here.

The sanctions will impose strict conditions on the designated banks opening or operating accounts within America and will be regulated by the International Emergency Economic Powers Act.

The president will be required to brief Congress on matters relating to Hezbollah’s criminal and financial dealings.

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Meira Svirsky

Meira Svirsky is the editor of ClarionProject.org