The United States has lifted curbs against the Elaf Islamic Bank in Iraq following the bank's "significant and demonstrated change in behavior." The Treasury Department imposed sanctions in July 2012 under the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010 (CISADA), against Elaf Islamic Bank, a privately-owned Iraqi financial institution, for "knowingly facilitating significant transactions and providing significant financial services for the U.S. and EU-designated Export Development Bank of Iran (EDBI)." The Treasury said in a statement, late on Friday, that following the CISADA finding, Elaf "immediately engaged the Treasury Department and began an intensive course of action to stop the conduct that led to the CISADA sanction, including freezing EDBI accounts at Elaf and reducing its overall exposure to the Iranian financial sector." Following today's action, U.S. financial institutions "are once again permitted to open or maintain correspondent accounts or payable-through accounts in the United States for Elaf Islamic Bank." Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David Cohen said "we welcome Elaf Islamic Bank back into the U.S. financial system, and we urge other designated individuals and entities around the world to follow its positive example." "As today's delisting demonstrates, our sanctions are flexible and can be lifted if the conduct that led to the sanction terminates," he added.
Cohen stressed "as we increase our sanctions against Iran, we will continue to target any financial institution that works with designated Iranian banks or attempts to assist Iran in evading sanctions."