TRENTON – Gov. Chris Christie signed into law legislation to impose financial sanctions on Iran Tuesday.
“The threat that Iran’s enrichment program poses to the prospect of long-term stability in the Middle East cannot be understated,” said Assemblyman John F. McKeon (D-Essex/Morris). ”One of the greatest things we can do for our ally Israel is to use the resources within our power to pressure those who would threaten its security, Iran being chief among them right now. This law helps deny Iran the ability to support acts of international terrorism or to fund the development and acquisition of weapons of mass destruction.”
The new law (formerly A-2146) prohibits all state and local entities from doing business with individuals or companies that engage in certain investment activities in the energy, financial or construction sectors of Iran. The law follows the direction of the July 2010 Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act signed into law by President Obama, which expressly authorizes states and local governments to prevent investment in companies operating in Iran.
Specifically, the law prohibits state and local contracting units, boards of education, and county colleges from contracting with individuals or entities engaged in certain investment activities in the energy, financial or construction sectors of Iran.
“New Jersey has taken similar steps against atrocities in the Sudan, and while we realize this alone won’t stop Iran’s efforts, this is a part of a larger effort to bring peace to the Middle East and protect Israel’s right to exist,” said Assemblywoman Annette Quijano (D-Union). “Threats of weapons of mass destruction cannot be tolerated against our allies, and money is a global language. By helping dry up financial support for Iran, we are taking a step toward protecting our friend, Israel.”
“Those who invest in sectors of the Iranian economy that strengthen President Ahmadinejad’s dictatorial regime are financially supporting a state sponsor of terrorism and human rights abuses,” said state Sen. Thomas Kean (R-Union.) “New Jersey has a long and proud history of supporting the international community’s efforts to combat oppression, torture, and terrorism by hitting rogue regimes where the pain is most acute: their treasuries. This law builds upon that tradition.”