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Message to the Congress Reporting on the Prohibition of Imports From Iran

October 29, 1987

To the Congress of the United States:

Pursuant to section 505 of the International Security and Development Cooperation Act of 1985 (22 U.S.C. 2349aa-9), I hereby report to the Congress that I have exercised my constitutional and statutory authority to prohibit the importation into the United States of all goods and services of Iranian origin.

I am enclosing a copy of the Executive Order that I have issued exercising this authority. I have delegated to the Secretary of the Treasury the power, in consultation with the Secretary of State, to carry out the provisions of the Order.

I have authorized these steps in response to the actions and policies of the Government of Iran in support of terrorism and in the conduct of aggressive and unlawful military action against U.S.-flag vessels and merchant vessels of other non-belligerent nations engaged in lawful and peaceful commerce in international waters of the Persian Gulf and territorial waters of non-belligerent nations of that region. These Iranian actions and policies have been supported in part by revenue earned from the sale of products imported into the United States. The measures taken pursuant to this Order are in response to such hostile Iranian actions occurring after the conclusion of the 1981 Algiers Accords, and are intended solely as a response to such action.

Since Iran was officially designated under U.S. law in 1984 as a country that has repeatedly supported acts of international terrorism, the United States has taken a number of limited economic measures in response to hostile Iranian actions. These measures have included export controls on items that would contribute to Iran's military potential and its ability to support international terrorism.

Iran, however, not only has continued but has escalated its aggressive acts against the United States. Iranian actions in the Persian Gulf have not only directly threatened U.S.-flag merchant vessels and U.S. forces but those of our allies and other friendly states as well. These policies of the Government of Iran have necessitated the further economic measures I have announced today.

The United States calls upon the Government of Iran to cease its support of terrorism and acts of aggression directed at the United States and other nations both in the Persian Gull and elsewhere. The United States calls upon other nations to join us by taking similar measures. We must demonstrate by firm political, economic, and other steps that the international community considers the actions and policies of the Government of Iran unlawful and intolerable.


The White House,

October 29, 1987.

Ronald Reagan, Message to the Congress Reporting on the Prohibition of Imports From Iran Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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