Iran said on Sunday it received $43 million in damages from the United States.
The Center for International Legal Affairs of the Legal Vice Presidency of the Iranian President released a statement on Sunday saying that $43 million was deposited into Tehran’s bank account in The Hague, the Netherlands, in connection to a legal case dealing with properties that were not transferred to Iran following the conclusion of the Algiers Declaration, according to a report from the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA). Newsweek could not independently verify Iran’s claim.
“Following repeated and persistent follow-ups by the Center for International Legal Affairs of the Legal Vice Presidency of the Iranian President to secure Iran’s rights based on the verdict, the amount of $43 million has been deposited by the US government into the account of the Islamic Republic of Iran at a Dutch bank in The Hague in damages and its interest,” the statement reads.
The case centers around Iran accusing the U.S. of violating its obligations under the Algiers Declaration to arrange for transfer of Iranian properties—including artworks, archeological objects, fossils and equipment—to the Middle Eastern country.
The Iran-United States Claims Tribunal sided with Tehran’s request to order the U.S. to compensate Iran for losses it suffered due to Washington, D.C., not transferring those items, according to tribunal documents from 2020.
Newsweek reached out to the White House and State Department for further comment via email.
Iran’s claim comes as President Joe Biden is facing scrutiny over his deal, which was announced in August, to secure the release of Americans held hostage in Iran in exchange for the release of $6 billion of Iranian funds from South Korea to Qatar. Critics have said the deal would embolden Iran.
The scrutiny intensified after Hamas, an ally to Iran, launched an attack against Israel on Saturday, a major escalation of the longtime conflict that drew rebuke from U.S. leaders, including Biden, who has cast himself as a strong ally to Israel. Critics, however, drew a connection between the attack and the newly-released funds, though the White House disputes any relation between the two.
Former President Donald Trump, the frontrunner in the 2024 Republican presidential primary, claimed in a Truth Social post on Saturday that the attack was funded by “American taxpayer dollars.”
“Sadly, American taxpayer dollars helped fund these attacks, which many reports are saying came from the Biden Administration,” he wrote.
The Biden administration has dismissed the notion that these funds were used in the attack, pointing to limitations placed that would require them to be used for only humanitarian purposes. A White House spokesperson said in a statement to Newsweek on Saturday that the funds will not be given to Iran.
“The money held in restricted accounts in Doha remains in Doha. Not a penny has been spent, and it will never go to Iran—it can only be used for future humanitarian-related purposes. Any suggestion to the contrary is false and misleading,” the spokesperson said.