Insider news & Analysis in Iran

By INU Staff

INU - Iran is in the process of purchasing billions of dollars of aircraft from Boeing. This controversial deal is causing waves of backlash.

The Iran Nuclear Deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) permitted certain US companies to engage in business with Iran. US-based Boeing entered into a $16.6 billion deal to sell 80 airplanes to IRANAIR, an Iranian airline that is 60% owned by the Iranian government.

Shurat Hadin, the Israel Law Center, warned Boeing that it will place liens on its planes if it followed through with the deal, which has since been completed. In July, the Israeli legal rights NGO, which represents hundreds of families of victims of Iranian-sponsored terrorism, who hold billions of dollars in unsatisfied US court judgments, said Iran must first be forced to satisfy its debts before it can purchase the planes.

Two months later, a federal court in Chicago asked US President Trump to decide on whether or not Boeing must disclose details of the transaction.

A US family, who were victims of a terrorist attack, are seeking enforcement of an unpaid $67,000,000 judgment against Iran, as well as demanding full disclosure of the Boeing's deal with Tehran. This comes after the family won a settlement of their judgment against Iranian assets in US federal court.

Iran does not have reachable assets in the United States, but a motion was filed by the Leibovitch family to freeze any assets owned by Iran that might be in Boeing's possession. The family judgment against Iran relates to a 2003 terror attack in which their seven-year-old child was killed and other family members were wounded.

The judgement awarded to the Leibovitch family stated that Iran was liable for funding terrorist organization, Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Iran has paid nothing.

Boeing claims that disclosing the details of the Iranian aircraft purchase will “interfere with US foreign policy toward Iran by obstructing a key component of the international nuclear deal.”

Nevertheless, Ruben Castillo, chief United States district judge for the Northern District of Illinois, ordered the Trump Administration, earlier this month, to file a statement by October 12 informing the court whether the government agrees or disagrees that revealing of the details of the Boeing deal interferes with US foreign policy toward Iran.

In an effort to keep the details of its agreements with Iran secret, Boeing went as far as filing its arguments about whether the details of the transactions should be revealed under the seal of the court, preventing public inspection.

After attorneys for the Leibovitch family served Boeing with an Illinois Citation to Discover Assets, Boeing claimed that simply disclosing the details of its transactions to enable the court to assess whether the Leibovitch family can reach any Iranian assets would cause “grievous damage” to US national security by “disrupting the JCPOA.”

According to the president of Shurat Hadin, Darshan-Leitner, Boeing “has raised every possible argument to conceal the terms of its deal with the terrorist state of Iran.”

On Wednesday she said, “Rather than just litigate the matter on its merits, and admit it has no moral dilemma doing business with a rogue regime that is responsible for so much innocent blood, it has gone on the attack against the family of the terror victims and their attorneys,” and added, “The terror victims have the right to seize all property belonging to Iran. Tehran is the preeminent cause of international terrorism today, and no publicly-traded US company should agree to provide it with airplanes that are being directly used to perpetrate extremist violence.”

She additionally asked Boeing’s leadership and stockholders “to assist the American terror victims to pursue justice; not serve as apologists for those that devastated their lives.”

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