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Rep. Gabbard Calls for Ballistic Missile Sanctions Against Iran

January 7, 2016, 10:33 AM HST · Updated January 7, 10:33 AM
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Tulsi Gabbard. Courtesy photo.

Tulsi Gabbard. Courtesy photo.

US Rep. Tulsi Gabbard today announced support for the bipartisan Zero Tolerance for Terror Act, introduced in response to Iran illegally launching two ballistic missiles in October and November of last year.

After investigating the Oct. 10 launch, the United Nations Security Council found that the launch violated UNSC Resolution 1929, but the council did not take action against Iran.

The congresswoman is an original co-sponsor of the legislation, which would allow Congress to quickly impose sanctions if the Iranian government commits an act of terror, provides support for terrorist organizations or violates international law by acquiring ballistic missile technology.

While the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action will scale back nuclear sanctions, it does not limit the ability of Congress to enact new sanctions related to acts of terror or development of ballistic missiles.

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“It’s been just six months since Iran agreed to curb its nuclear activity and end its pursuits to develop a nuclear weapon, and Iran is already using other means to threaten our allies and violate its international commitments, including two recent ballistic missile tests that directly violate the UN Security Council Resolution 1929 and were aimed at threatening our allies in Israel and the Arab Gulf,” said Rep. Gabbard, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. “If we fail to take action to hold Iran accountable now, ensuring there are consequences to their actions, all future efforts to enforce the terms of these agreements will ring hollow,”

“By giving Congress the ability to quickly respond to Iranian violations of international law, this bill sends a clear message that we will hold their government accountable for continued illegal ballistic missile development or support for terror organizations,” said Congressman Joe Kennedy. “As we move closer to implementation of the JCPOA, that message must be clear, not only to Iran, but also to Israel and our allies around the world.”

“Iran’s recent ballistic missile tests and this week’s unveiling of a new underground missile depot are powerful reminders of this regime’s blatant disregard for international law,” said Congressman Ted Deutch, who serves as ranking Democrat on the Middle East and North Africa Subcommittee. “With Iran set to receive billions of dollars in sanctions relief and no indication that it plans to suspend its illegal missile development, support for terrorism or egregious human rights abuses, Congress must be prepared to act swiftly and decisively. This legislation enhances our ability to hold Iran accountable at a moment’s notice while sending the regime the message that it cannot continue to violate international law without consequence.”

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The Zero Tolerance for Terror Act was sponsored by US Reps. Joe Kennedy III (D-MA) and Ted Deutch (D-FL). In addition to Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, original cosponsors include Reps. Juan Vargas (D-CA), Jim Bridenstine (R-OK), Joe Wilson (R-SC) and John Delaney (D-MD).

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