Frequently Asked Questions

207. What were the criteria for Treasury's CISADA finding against Bank of Kunlun? How many other institutions were you looking at and why did you decide to take action against Bank of Kunlun?

Answer

Based on information made available to the Treasury Department, the Department has found that China’s Bank of Kunlun has knowingly facilitated significant transactions for various Iranian-linked banks designated by the United States under our WMD or terrorism authorities.

Upon finding that Bank of Kunlun was knowingly engaged in these activities that are sanctionable under the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act (CISADA), the Secretary of the Treasury has prohibited U.S. banks from opening or maintaining correspondent accounts or payable-through accounts in the United States for Bank of Kunlun – effectively cutting off Bank of Kunlun’s direct access to the U.S. financial system.

Since CISADA was signed into law in July 2010, Treasury has engaged with over 120 financial institutions and bank regulators in more than 60 countries all over the world to brief them on the financial provisions of CISADA, and, in cases where we had specific concerns, has shared information about those concerns.

This global engagement campaign has proven highly successful, as we have seen the overwhelming majority of financial institutions with which we have engaged change their business practices – even close any correspondent accounts with U.S. designated Iranian banks – to ensure that their access to the U.S. financial system is not put at risk.

The July 31, 2012 action against Bank of Kunlun was in response to its ongoing relationships with U.S.-designated Iranian banks.

Note: The Treasury Department had also made a CISADA finding against Iraq’s Elaf Islamic Bank on July 31, 2012. On May 17, 2013, Elaf Islamic Bank was delisted and its name was removed from the Part 561 List.

Date Released
May 17, 2013