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Obama will sign Iran sanctions bill Thursday

Obama will sign Iran sanctions bill Thursday

The White House confirms that President Obama will sign into law Thursday sweeping new measures to impose unilateral penalties on companies that contribute to broad swaths of Iran’s energy and banking sectors.

The signing will take place in the East Room of the White House, and will include "members of Congress, leaders of organizations that worked to pass the bill," and U.S. officials including U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice, according to an adminstration official.

The legislation, led by Senate Banking Committee chairman Chris Dodd, D-CT, and House Foreign Affairs Committee chairman Howard Berman, D-CA, was passed by the House and Senate last week by votes of 408-8 and 99-0, respectively.

The administration has said repeatedly that implementing the sanctions does not signal an end to its two-track policy of mixing engagement and pressure. The White House hopes the measures will convince Iran to come back to the negotiating table.

Meanwhile, Iran is planning to meet again with Brazil and Turkey to follow up on the nuclear fuel-swap deal the three countries announced just before the U.N. Security Council voted to impose its own new sanctions on Tehran. The Obama administration has been clear that it considers the Brazil-Turkey deal insufficient and inadequate in dealing with international concerns over Iran’s nuclear program.