Marco Rubio to Joe Biden: No Sanctions Relief for Iran While Israel Under Fire

Marco Rubio
AP Photo/Molly Riley

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and 43 other Senators, all Republicans, wrote Wednesday to President Joe Biden urging him not to provide sanctions relief to the Iranian regime, given that it is funding and arming Palestinian terrorists firing rockets at Israel.

Biden and his administration have been trying to renew the Iran nuclear deal of 2015, which offered Iran sanctions relief in return for promises not to enrich uranium beyond a certain level, though only for a limited period. The Obama administration also gave Iran pallets of cash worth billions of dollars to secure the release of Americans held by the regime. Intelligence revealed by Israel in 2018 showed Iran had continued its nuclear weapons program, while giving funds to terrorist proxies.

The letter from Rubio and his colleagues said:

We write with regard to the ongoing rocket attacks against Israel by the Palestinian terrorist organization Hamas. Over the past couple days, Palestinian terrorists in Gaza, who are funded by Iran, have launched a series of rocket attacks into Israel. They are targeting Israeli civilians and cities, including Israel’s capital Jerusalem. This is troubling as members of your administration are currently in Vienna negotiating with Iran, the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism. In light of these recent attacks by Hamas against Israel, the United States should take all steps necessary to hold Tehran accountable and under no circumstances, provide sanctions relief to Iran. This is especially important as Iran is supporting terrorist activity against the United States’ closest ally in the region, Israel.

As you know, Palestinian terrorist groups launched more than 1,000 rockets targeting Israel over the last few days alone. This includes the first rockets aimed at Jerusalem since 2014. While the United States and countries around the world condemned these rocket attacks, Iran resoundingly supports this aggression.  Shortly after the attacks began, and as they continued, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei tweeted that Palestinians should unite to “use the tools of their disposal” to attack Israel, which he recently called not a nation, but a “terrorist garrison.” Even the Iranian Foreign Minister, Mohammed Javad Zarif, who currently is supervising Iran’s negotiating team in Vienna, called Hamas’ leader Ismail Haniyeh to express Iran’s support for the group’s actions.

Iran has demanded full sanctions relief as a precondition to negotiations with the Biden administration.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the new e-book, The Zionist Conspiracy (and how to join it). His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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