Senate group pushes new round of Iran sanctions

WASHINGTON (AP) — A bipartisan group of senators are pushing for a new round of penalties on Iran, determined to cripple the regime’s economy and thwart any nuclear ambitions.

The legislation unveiled on Wednesday would essentially penalize any financial institution around the world that helps Iran in a non-local currency. It would block Tehran’s access to foreign exchange reserves and limit its ability to deal in foreign currencies, including euros.

Backing the measure are Republican Sens. Mark Kirk of Illinois, Susan Collins of Maine and John Cornyn of Texas and Democrats Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Bill Nelson of Florida.

The group says the Iranian government, including the Central Bank of Iran, has accounts worldwide with foreign exchange reserves. Iran often converts them into local currencies for imports and other financial dealings.

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