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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Araqchi: Iran to take action if Congress visa waiver bill contradicts JCPOA

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Tehran, Dec 13, IRNA – Foreign Ministry Deputy for Legal and International Affairs Abbas Araqchi said Iran will take action if the recent US Congress bill on visa requirements for those who have travelled to Iran in the past past five years contradicts the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of a meeting here on Sunday, he noted that the Congress decision has many angles to study from the legal point of view.

He said Iran was studying the bill and will take necessary action once it is finalized.

He said Iran was lobbying with the 5+1 and the European Union foreign policy chief on the issue.

Hours before the US House of Representatives voted to tighten visa-free travel to the US, many Iranians, especially those living in America, Europe and Australia, took to social media to express concern over the consequences of the bill.

Citizens of 38 countries, many in the EU, can currently fly to the US without applying for a visa under America's Visa Waiver Program.

The new legislation initially said those eligible for the waiver program who had travelled to 'terrorist hotspots' like Iraq and Syria where IS controls territory would need to obtain a US visa.

But the final version included Iran and Sudan to the list of countries because they are considered 'state sponsors of terrorism' by the US.

The US House of Representatives has wrongly slapped Iranians with a new visa restriction instead of targeting those with the extremist mindset of San Bernardino killers, a report says.

The US House overwhelmingly voted on Tuesday in favor of tougher travel restrictions for foreign citizens allowed to enter the United States without a visa.

The bill, which was passed by 407 to 19, is the second security legislation approved in the lower chamber in response to the Paris attacks on November 13.

The measure would require visitors from the 38 "visa waiver" countries to obtain a visa to travel to the US if they have been to Syria, Iraq, Iran or Sudan in the past five years.

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