sanctions

Mnuchin: Foreign Groups ‘On Notice’ About Business With North Korea

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin discussed the Trump administration’s new sanctions on North Korea, saying the order sends a message that foreign financial institutions are “on notice.”

House Looking at Moving Its Own Sanctions Bill, Adding North Korea
Measure would replace Senate Iran and Russia sanctions bill that faced blue slip issue

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said the House could add North Korea provisions to a Russia and Iran sanctions measure. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy announced Friday that the House is looking to add North Korea provisions to a Russia and Iran sanctions bill that is stuck in a procedural morass. 

The House passed a standalone North Korea sanctions bill in May on a 419 — 1 vote, but the Senate has yet to take up the measure. Adding North Korea to the Russia and Iran sanctions measure would ensure speedier Senate consideration. 

Senators Seek to Follow White House Action on North Korea
Lawmakers hope to ratchet up economic pressure on Pyongyang

Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner is one of a handful of lawmakers pushing sanctions legislation on North Korea. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senators from both sides of the aisle are hoping to move quickly on legislation that would put further economic pressure on North Korea in the aftermath of the country’s first successful launch of a long-range ballistic missile.

The bills, which would, among other things, impose additional economic sanctions on financial institutions that do business with Pyongyang, are the latest in a line of major foreign policy matters before the chamber in the early tenure of a presidency that largely lacks the traditional diplomatic experience of past administrations.

Rouhani Warns Trump Not to Rip Up Iran Deal
Iranian president says the nuclear pact should stand

President-elect Donald Trump called the Iran nuclear agreement a “disaster” and “the worst deal ever negotiated,” (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned the United States of repercussions should President-elect Donald Trump follow through on his promise to rip up the global nuclear deal.

During a televised speech at the University of Tehran on Tuesday, Rouhani referred to Trump and President Barack Obama explicitly, promising to act if the U.S. pulls out of the nuclear pact or tries to extend the Iran Sanction Act, Reuters reported.

White House Breaks With Senate Democrats on Iran Sanctions
Administration says it has ample authorities without 1996 law

Sens. Richard Blumenthal,, D-Conn., left, and Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., are among a group of Democratic senators pushing for the re-authorization of a law on Iran sanctions, but the White House says its renewal is not a necessity. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Obama administration is breaking with a group of Senate Democrats who want to renew expiring sanctions that target Iran's energy sector, arguing that it has the muscle to apply new penalties administratively if needed.

At issue is the Iran Sanctions Act of 1996, which punishes investments in Iran’s energy sector and was meant to deter Tehran’s pursuit of a nuclear arsenal. Set to expire on Dec. 31, the law has been a “pivotal component of U.S. sanctions against Iran’s energy sector … since enactment in 1996,” the Congressional Research Service has noted, adding that its reach has “been expanded to other Iranian industries.”