US Might Freeze Iraqi Access To Central Bank Fed Accounts

The United States continues to use its blackmailing tactics to arm-twist its way with Middle Eastern nations. It is Iraq that is desperately trying not to be caught in the cross-firing between Washington and Tehran, under pressure from both sides.

The Trump administration has warned Iraq that if the latter decides to send back American forces, it stands to lose much more than it can imagine. For one, Iraq will have to deal with a loss of access to the New York Fed account, where international oil sale revenue is kept. Political analysts say that this will definitely create a cash crunch in Iraq’s financial system.

Last week, Iraqi officials had spoken to counterparts in White House, requesting a withdrawal of troops. The same was brushed aside and instead, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo steered the conversation in a direction of the relationship of mutual benefit and peace. There was no way American troops were being withdrawn. The desperate Iraqi carrion call was ignored.

Due to its allegiance to Iran for obvious reasons, lawmakers in Baghdad now want to limit American support to Iraq. However, Trump administration is not interested in taking into consideration their genuine concerns of being bombed and attacked by Iran, for seeming to be taking sides with Washington.

As many as 5300 American troops were requested to be moved out of Baghdad, following a threat from Tehran that the latter would attack anyone and anything that holds any kind of soft friendship with Washington.

Iraq, like other countries, maintains government accounts at the New York Fed as an important part of managing the country’s finances, including revenue from oil sales.

Knowing the way that economically, Trump is known to move quickly, the threat does not look like an empty one. In 2015, Iraq has faced a similar situation. It has seen a terrible squeeze in its when the U.S. had suspended access for several weeks to the central bank’s account at the New York Fed. The Central Bank can do so, if there are US sanction laws or if the account holders are in violation of US laws. In 2015, there was suspicion over cash being filtered through a loosely regulated market into Iranian banks and to the Islamic State extremist group.

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