Illinois Congressmen Write Boeing CEO, Urge Against Business with Iran

A group of Illinois congressmen wrote a letter urging Boeing's CEO not to move forward with a reported deal with Iran

A group of Illinois congressmen wrote a letter Monday to Boeing’s CEO Dennis Muilenburg addressing the aircraft manufacturing company’s ongoing conversations with Iran about the sale of airplanes.

Rep. Bob Dold, Rep. Peter Roskam and Rep. Randy Hultgren wrote that they fear that a relationship between Boeing and Iran could lead to the country turning American planes into Iranian “warplanes.” The company’s international headquarters are located in Chicago.

“It is our strong belief Western companies should not sell, lease, or otherwise aid (Iran) in the procurement of aircraft, parts, or related services,” the letter reads. “Such commercial transactions would effectively subsidize the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, significantly augmenting the regime’s ability to sow the seeds of death and destruction around the globe.”

The letter references 2015's Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, which removed certain sanctions previously imposed on Iran over their illegal nuclear program. An exemption in the plan was made for the sale of aircrafts.

“We are confident Boeing is in compliance with the law,” the letter reads. “This is not about doing what is legal- it is about doing what is right.”

Roskam, the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, has been a staunch opponent of American companies doing business with Iran. Last week, he introduced a bill which looks to prohibit the Department of Defense from offering contracts to any company that does business with Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and other hostile entities.

Roskam also recently spoke out about a potential $25 billion deal between French aviation company Airbus and Iran. In addition, Roskam penned a Wall Street Journal opinion piece last month urging companies not to do business with the country.

Boeing’s board is expected to meet this week in Chicago. The company did not immediately respond to Ward Room’s request for comment.

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