Sens. Mark Kirk (R., Ill.) and Robert Menendez (D., N.J.) revived on Thursday long-stalled legislation to impose and extend sanctions on Iran for a period of at least 10 more years, according to sources familiar with the move.
The bipartisan bid to extend economic sanctions on the Islamic Republic comes ahead of a self-imposed June 30 deadline for Western powers to reach a nuclear agreement with Iran.
Iranian leaders in recent days have demanded greater concessions from the United States and are insisting that economic sanctions must be completely lifted on day one of any agreement—before international inspectors are able to verify that Iran is not building nuclear weapons.
The Obama administration has been fighting congressional attempts to extend and impose new sanctions on Tehran, going so far as to lobby sympathetic legislators to kill these efforts.
However, Menendez and Kirk have tried multiple times to impose greater sanctions against the White House’s demands.
The senators moved again on Thursday to push sanctions despite White House objection. They filed legislation that would extend the economic sanctions on Tehran for at least 10 more years.
The bill seeks to renew the Iran Sanctions Act of 1996, which is set to expire next year.