Rep. Love Bill to increase congressional oversight of sanctions on state sponsors of terrorism

Congresswoman Mia Love has introduced a bill to give Congress better oversight into the financial services provided to state sponsors of terrorism and certain sanctioned persons. 

Right now, Congress is limited in its ability to oversee the execution of sanctions on state sponsors of terrorism.

The Banking Transparency for Sanctioned Persons Act of 2018, H.R. 6751 would require the Treasury Secretary to submit a semiannual report to Congress that would include:

  • A copy of any license issued by the Secretary that authorizes a financial institution to provide financial services benefitting a state sponsor of terrorism (Iran, North Korea, Syria, and Sudan);
  • A list of any foreign financial institutions that knowingly conducted a significant transaction for a person sanctioned pursuant to the Sergei Magnitsky Act (victim of a fatal Russian imprisonment incident), the Global Magnitsky Act, or U.S. sanctions against human rights abusers and corrupt foreign officials.

“Sharing this kind of information with Congress should be automatic, as licenses represent exemptions to our sanctions programs,” Rep. Love said.  “Congressional oversight of sanctions is limited without visibility into the transactions Treasury is authorizing.”

Even though U.S. banks are prohibited from doing business with a sanctioned person, banks in other countries can do so without penalty.  H.R. 6751 would require a list of institutions engaged in such activity, and puts foreign banks on alert that Congress will be watching their dealings with human rights abusers and corrupt officials.

On September 13, 2018, The Financial Services Committee in a bipartisan vote, advanced this bill unanimously, 48-0.