Sen. Cruz Introduces Comprehensive “Hamas Sanctions Act” To Deny Hamas Funds and Safe Havens
“United States must stand with Israel for as long as it takes to utterly eradicate Hamas”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today introduced the Hamas Sanctions Act, the first piece of legislation to comprehensively target Hamas. The legislation would impose sanctions on Hamas, its members and affiliates, and countries that provide funding and territory for Hamas operations.
About the bill Sen. Cruz said, “The United States should use every resource at our disposal, including our diplomatic power and sanctions leverage, for as long as it takes, to ensure that our Israeli allies are able to utterly eradicate Hamas. Instead of countering Hamas and its enablers, however, the Biden administration has spent the last two and a half years indirectly and even directly funding them. The administration poured hundreds of millions of dollars into the Gaza Strip, despite knowing this would benefit Hamas terrorists, and allowed roughly $100 billion to flow to the Iranian regime, which they knew the Ayatollah would pass along to Hamas. The administration also refuses to enforce sanctions against Hamas for terrorism, for the use of human shields, or against those who violate terrorism sanctions and provide Hamas with financial or material support. The Hamas Sanctions Act would end these catastrophic policies, prohibit the administration from allowing further funds from flowing to Hamas and Iran, and end the ability of provide Hamas leaders with safe haven in violation of sanctions.”
Read the bill here.
BACKGROUND: The Hamas Sanctions Act –
- Sanctions every Hamas member and affiliate known to the U.S. within 15 days.
- Blocks Hamas’ funding by –
- Prohibiting U.S. taxpayer money from going into the Gaza Strip, including by rescinding the Biden administration’s ability to give itself exemptions from anti-terrorism laws.
- Preventing Iran from accessing and raising revenue. First, prevents the Biden administration from unfreezing Iran’s sanctioned overseas accounts, including the known $6 billion and $10 billion accounts in Gulf banks. Second, the bill imposes sanctions on Iran’s “ghost fleet” of oil tankers, which it has used to raise $80 billion since President Biden took office. These sanctions also target tankers’ owners and operators. It then requires the Biden administration to work towards de-certify and de-flag those vessels.
- Blocks Hamas’ ability to find safe havens abroad, including in Qatar or Turkey, by imposing sanctions on hotels, landlords, banks, and similar businesses in allied countries that provide services to Hamas leaders, and by requiring determinations whether such countries qualify as state sponsors of terrorism for hosting Hamas.
- Strengthens and enforces sanctions law against the use of human shields that Sen. Cruz authored and passed into law in 2019. This legislation would renew the legislation that is set to expire, and also sanction Hamas affiliate Palestine Islamic Jihad (PIJ). It would also prevent the Biden administration from ignoring the 2019 law, as they have been doing.