The Obama administration reportedly signed legal waivers that allowed sanctions relief to the tune of $10 billion in cash and gold to be sent to Iran as part of the Iran deal. But the White House denies that they had any direct role in the payments.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the cash and gold were moved through third-party countries in the Middle East and Europe after Asian nations unfroze Iranian oil revenues and wired the funds to various banks, including in Oman, Switzerland and Turkey. U.S. lawmakers and Middle East allies worry, due to the highly liquid nature of cash, the payments could be used to fund terror regimes.
The money was converted to currency and bars of gold, U.S. officials said. The White House put a single restriction on the transactions: They could not include U.S. dollars.
To enable the flow of the $700 million monthly payments, the White House signed a series of legal waivers authorizing countries to unfreeze Iranian oil revenues, the officials said. Without the waivers, those countries in many cases would have been in violation of U.S. secondary sanctions.
The Obama administration says it played no role in the $10 billion cash and gold payments to Iran, contending that the countries that unfroze the oil revenues and made the banking transfers acted of their own volition."