Library of Congress

Law Library of Congress

The Library of Congress > Law Library > News & Events > Global Legal Monitor

Israel: Embargo on Providers of Support for Iran’s Program of Weapons of Mass Destruction

(Aug. 30, 2012) On July 25, 2012, the Knesset (Israel's parliament) passed the Law on the Struggle Against Iran's Nuclear Program, 5772-2012. The stated primary objective of the Law is to impose sanctions on individuals and on corporations that assist Iran in promoting its nuclear program or in obtaining weapons or carriers of weapons of mass destruction. The Law declares that its additional objective is to impose restrictions “on corporations that maintain business relations with Iran, for Iran's benefit or in its territory, as part of the international struggle against Iran's nuclear program.” (Law on the Struggle Against Iran's Nuclear Program, 5772-2012 [in Hebrew], SEFER HAHUKIM No. 2377, at 634; also available at the Knesset website (last visited Aug. 28, 2012).)

The Law prohibits maintaining any economic contact with foreign entities declared to be providing assistance to Iran in developing its program for nuclear or other weapons of mass destruction (referred to as “foreign assisting bodies”). Such a declaration may be issued by a ministerial committee composed of ministers of the following government departments: the Treasury; Foreign Affairs; Energy; Industry, Trade, and Employment; Justice; and Defense. Prior to making a declaration, the ministerial committee must inform the suspected body of the intention to declare it a foreign assisting body; post a notice of that intention on the Internet site of the office assigned to economic sanctions against Iran in the Ministry of the Treasury, in Hebrew, Arabic, and English; and conduct a hearing at which the suspected body's objection must be heard if so requested. The Law provides for special procedures for cancellations and for periodic reviews of declarations. (Id.)

The Law imposes a duty on any person to report to the Israeli police any reasonable suspicion that a body with which he was asked to conduct an economic activity in the course of his business or position is a foreign assisting body. The Law further authorizes confiscation of property related to violation of its requirements or property owned by the offender that is of the same value as the property related to the offense. (Id.; see also the related bill, at HATZA'OT HOK No. 696, at 896, Knesset website (last visited Aug. 28, 2012).)