U.S. Senate votes unanimously for amendment to send message on Iran

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate voted unanimously on Thursday for a non-binding amendment to a budget bill intended to make it easier to reimpose sanctions if Iran violates a nuclear deal. The vote was 100-0 for the amendment, sponsored by Republican Senator Mark Kirk, which would establish a fund to cover the cost of imposing sanctions if Tehran violated terms of an interim nuclear agreement now in effect, or the final agreement negotiators hope to reach before July. The Senate spent Thursday voting on dozens of amendments to a budget resolution. The votes are non-binding because the legislation will not become law, but many senators introduce amendments to send political messages. The Senate also passed a non-binding amendment to compensate American victims of the 1979 Iran hostage crisis Kirk is deeply skeptical of international negotiations on Iran's nuclear program. He co-authored a bill that would tighten sanctions on Tehran, which President Barack Obama has threatened to veto as a threat to delicate international negotiations. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Tuesday the Senate would vote on Kirk's sanctions bill if international negotiators miss their deadline at the end of this month for reaching a framework nuclear agreement. (Reporting by Patricia Zengerle; Editing by Leslie Adler)

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