Republican senators are calling on the Biden administration to impose a new arms embargo on Iran, something that would move the US even further away from rejoining the Iran nuclear deal.
Senators Joni Ernst (R-IA) and Bill Hagerty (R-TN) sent a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken making the demand. “We urge you to renew the effort for the United States to work with our allies and partners on an effective and enforceable arms embargo regime against Iran as soon as possible,” the senators wrote.
A UN arms embargo on Iran was lifted last October despite the Trump administration’s efforts to continue the embargo. “As you know in 2016, the United Nations Security Council extended a ban on the transfer of arms but in a concession to Iran, allowed this ban to expire on October 18, 2020,” the letter reads.
Senator Ernst is strongly opposed to the Biden administration rejoining the Iran nuclear deal, known as the JCPOA. She introduced a resolution in February with other Republican Iran hawks condemning a revival of the JCPOA. “Even to discuss rejoining the original Iran Nuclear Deal right now is unwise. To appease this terrorist state could be catastrophic,” Ernst said when the resolution was introduced.
It’s not only Republican senators who oppose a return to the JCPOA. Senator Bob Menendez, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, has been outspoken in his opposition to the Biden administration lifting sanctions on Iran to return to the original agreement.