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Iran Threatens Legal Action If U.S. Diverts Frozen Funds To Terror Victims

Iran has threatened to appeal to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) if the United States diverts $2 billion in frozen funds to the victims of terror attacks.

Iran has warned that it views as "theft" a U.S. Supreme Court ruling last week to divert $2 billion from Iranian assets frozen in U.S. banks to survivors of those killed in attacks blamed on Tehran.

"We hold the U.S. administration responsible for preservation of Iranian funds, and if they are plundered, we will lodge a complaint with the ICJ for reparation," Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said while visiting Macedonia on April 25.

The U.S. court decision affects more than 1,300 Americans whose relatives were killed in the 1983 bombing of a U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut and the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia.

Iran has denied involvement in the bombings and Zarif said any diversion would be a "misappropriation" of Iranian funds.

"We have announced since the beginning that the Iranian government does not recognize the U.S. extraterritorial law and considers the U.S. court ruling to blockade Iranian funds null and void and in gross violation of the international law," he said.

Based on reporting by AFP, IRNA, and Voice of America