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US compensation bill advances in Iran

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
A view of Iran's parliament in session. ©IRNA

Iranian lawmakers have submitted a bill, demanding compensation from the US after recent measures taken in the United States to appropriate frozen Iranian assets, an MP says. 

The bill, signed by 203 lawmakers, was handed over with a single urgency status to the parliament’s presiding board on Monday for examination, MP Ibrahim Karkhaneh said.

“After examination at the specialized commission, the bill will be presented to Majlis for voting,” the Fars news agency quoted him as saying.

“The bill on receiving compensation and damages from the US government was prepared after recent anti-Iranian measures taken by the American administration and congress,” he added.

The US Supreme Court is reportedly considering a case filed by over 1,300 Americans pressing to receive billions of dollars of the Iranian money in awarded damages over two bombings in Beirut and Saudi Arabia in 1983 and 1996.

The Obama administration has reportedly urged the court not to overturn the decisions of US circuit and appeals courts to award the plaintiffs.

In 2012, President Barack Obama issued an executive order blocking all of the Central Bank of Iran’s assets held in the US in order to prevent Tehran from repatriating them.

At the same time, Congress passed a law which included a provision making it easier for the Americans to use Iranian funds frozen in the US. 

The Iranian draft bill, initially introduced late last month, cites 11 cases of US role in actions against the Islamic Republic for which it demands compensation.

On top of the list, the bill demands restitution from the US over loss of lives and property damage resulting from the CIA-led 1953 coup which toppled the government of Mohammad Mosaddeq and restored the shah as an absolute dictator.

The US should also pay compensation for more than 223,000 Iranians killed and about 600,000 others injured “due to American intelligence, political and military cooperation” with former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein in his 1980-1988 war on Iran, the draft says.  

The bill further seeks damages over US support for MKO and other terrorist groups in assassinating and kidnapping Iranians and hijacking the country’s flights as well as Washington’s sanctions on Tehran and blockade of its assets.

The MPs have also cited the US government complicit in Saudi killing of Iranian pilgrims in 1987 and deaths of several hundred others during the Hajj stampede in Mina in September and demanded compensation.

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