(Luis Cornelio, Headline USA) President Joe Biden has made the decision to block the release of $6 billion in frozen assets that were recently transferred to Iran as part of a contentious prisoners’ swap.
The move follows the barbaric terrorist attack against Israel by Hamas, an Iranian-backed group based in the Gaza Strip.
These funds were granted in the wake of Iran’s agreement to release six American citizens from custody. Bipartisan congressional critics suggested Iranian involvement in the recent terrorist attack on Israel.
The Wall Street Journal published a report stating that Iran was involved in plotting the attack, which claimed the lives of over 1,300 Israeli citizens, including Americans and more than 500 children.
A second report, citing U.S. intelligence officers, noted that while Iran was aware of the attack, it was not immediately aware of the timing.
“We have not currently seen anything to suggest Iran supported or was behind the attack,” a U.S. official said. “Our experience tells us though that it is premature to draw any final conclusion on the issue.”
On the other hand, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan asserted Iran’s undirect complicity in the attack.
“They have provided the lion’s share of the funding for the military wing of Hamas,” he said during a press conference on Wednesday. “They provide training, they have provided capabilities, they have provided support, and they have had engagement in contact with Hamas over the years and years.”
Despite his scorching remarks, Sullivan initially refused to confirm whether Biden would block the $6 billion in frozen assets. “We have not yet had a dollar of that $6 billion spent. And I will leave it at that,” he stated.
According to Axios, pressure from within the Democratic Party also played a role in the decision to block the funds. Concerns about the 2024 election prompted several Democratic senators, including Sens. Joe Manchin, D-W.V., Jon Tester, D-Mont., Jacky Rosen, D-Nev., Bob Casey, D-PA., Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., and Sherrod Brown, D-Ohi.
Jake Sullivan refuses to say whether or not Biden will seek to re-freeze $6 billion in assets for Iran. pic.twitter.com/uxNSXdi9KW
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) October 10, 2023