Expediency Council sees no necessity to ratify FATF-related bills: politician

TEHRAN, Sep. 01 (MNA) – Principalist politician Mohammadreza Bahonar said that no need is felt right now among members of the Expediency Council to pass FATF-related bills, namely Palermo and CFT.

“On the issue of conventions related to FATF, members of the Expediency Council (EC) have arrived at this conclusion that first of all, EC should determine the results of Iran’s prior commitments to FATF and see if Tehran has benefited from them or not. Then we would address remaining issues such as Palermo and CFT,” Bahonar, an EC member, said in a press conference in Tehran on Sunday.

“Currently the Expediency Council sees no necessity to ratify Palermo and CFT bills. It also should be noted that we do not care about the four-month deadline of the FATF,” he highlighted.

“We are also waiting to see whether Europeans, as they claim, are showing any determination in implementing their JCPOA commitments or not,” Bahonar added.

On June 21, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) announced its decision to continue the suspension of counter-measures against Iran, noting the country’s progress of legislative, anti-money laundering efforts. The financial watchdog went on to note, however, that “if by October 2019, Iran does not enact the Palermo and Terrorist Financing Conventions in line with the FATF Standards, then the FATF will require introducing enhanced relevant reporting mechanisms or systematic reporting of financial transactions; and increased external audit requirements for financial groups with respect to any of their branches and subsidiaries located in Iran.”

Voices inside Iran are divided on the ratification of the two remaining controversial bills. While the Parliament and the Rouhani administration have been more or less in favor of joining the FATF by ratifying the CFT and Palermo bills, the Guardian Council and Expediency Council have their own concerns.

A member of the Expediency Council, Hossein Mozaffar, said in June that “the kind of transparency that FATF seeks in the Palermo bill is to find out our ways for bypassing sanctions. For a country under sanctions, it is a very unwise move to show our hands and let them see and block all our strategies.”

MAH/IRN83460287

News Code 149565

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