Iran’s Guardians Council Approves Anti-Money-Laundering Measures

A top Iranian constitutional body has approved measures passed by parliament to bring the country more into line with international anti-money-laundering norms.

The Guardians Council, which vets legislation passed by parliament, gave its approval to the legal amendments on combating the funding of terrorism, the body’s spokesman, Abbas Ali Kadkhodaei, was quoted as saying by Iranian state media.

“The amendment bill on combating the financing of terrorism (CFT) is not in contradiction with the country’s constitution and Shari'a laws,” Khadkhodaei told journalists on August 11.

The move comes amid efforts by Iran to attract foreign investment despite the reimposition of U.S sanctions following a May decision by U.S. President Donald Trump to withdraw from the 2015 nuclear deal.

The world's financial-crimes watchdog, the intergovernmental Financial Action Task Force (FATF), said in June that Iran has until October to implement reforms or face consequences.

The government of Iranian President Hassan Rohani has introduced several pieces of legislation aimed at addressing FATF’s concerns, hoping the body will remove the country from its blacklist.

Hard-liners in the parliament have expressed concern that adhering to FATF standards could hamper the country’s financial support for groups such as Lebanon’s Hizballah, which has been designated by the U.S. as a terrorist organization.

Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said in June that parliament should pass domestic laws to combat money laundering and counter terrorism rather than working to comply with international standards.

Based on reporting by Reuters, IRNA, and Mehr