In a recent development, the United States and the Qatari government have agreed to prevent Iran from accessing $6 billion in humanitarian aid that was unfrozen by the United States earlier this year. Wally Adeyemo, the deputy Treasury secretary, revealed this information to House Democrats on Thursday. This decision comes in the wake of widespread backlash over alleged ties between Iran and Hamas' recent attacks on Israel.
Republicans have been critical of President Joe Biden since the conflict between Hamas and Israel began, as Iran has long been a supporter of Hamas. However, the direct connection between Iran and the attack on Israel remains unclear at this point. Despite this, concerns were raised regarding the possibility of the $6 billion in unfrozen assets being used by Iran or Hamas against Israel. Republican Senator Marsha Blackburn called on the Biden Administration to refreeze the funds due to this concern.
The funds in question were unfrozen as part of an agreement made last month, which also resulted in the release of five Americans who were previously imprisoned by Iran. It is important to note that the $6 billion can only be used for humanitarian purposes.
Over the years, Iran has provided weapons and support to Hamas, leading U.S. officials to investigate the extent of Iran's involvement in the recent attack on Israel. While officials believe that Iran was surprised by the attack and was not directly involved, it is acknowledged that the attack would not have been possible without funding, weapons, and training from Iran.
Earlier this week, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen stated that the funds could be refrozen if it is determined that Iran played a role in the attacks. However, the United Nations has emphasized that the U.S. government cannot renege on the agreement, as the funds rightfully belong to the people of Iran.
In summary, the U.S. and Qatari governments have decided to prevent Iran from accessing $6 billion in humanitarian aid that was unfrozen earlier this year. This decision comes amid concerns over Iran's alleged ties to Hamas' attacks on Israel. The funds were unfrozen as part of an agreement that also resulted in the release of American prisoners. While officials believe that Iran was not directly involved in the recent attack, they acknowledge that Iran's support has been crucial to Hamas over the years.