Ehsan Khandouzi, the Minister of Economic Affairs and Finance of Iran

Iran Affirms Unaltered Policy Towards FATF Amidst Speculation

Sunday, 10/15/2023

The Iranian Ministry of Economy has provided a formal response to recent speculations regarding a potential shift in Iran's stance towards the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

The ministry's statement on Sunday states, "The Islamic Republic of Iran's policy concerning the FATF remains unaltered."

Any modifications to this approach, the statement clarifies, must be subjected to scrutiny by the appropriate authorities.

The FATF, or the Financial Action Task Force, is an initiative established by G-7 nations to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism. The recent resurgence of discussions regarding Iran's approach to FATF coincided with the international scrutiny that followed a violent attack by Hamas on Israel, leading to criticism of Iran's support for the organization.

On Saturday, a prominent politician in Tehran hinted that President Ebrahim Raisi's administration might consider revisiting four bills related to Iran's potential adherence to FATF conventions. The four bills have lingered in Iran's legislative process since 2017, facing opposition, especially from hardliners. They encompass measures for joining the convention against organized crime, amending the anti-money laundering law, accepting the convention against financial support for terrorism, and amending the law against financial support for terrorism.

The statement concludes by making a plea to the media, urging them to approach the matter with a “technical perspective, devoid of political bias.”

Opposition to the bills from hardliners has been based on the argument that their acceptance would constrain Iran from providing financial support to groups like Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Hezbollah, which are designated as terrorist organizations by numerous countries.

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