Seoul: South Korean news agency, Yon Hap has reported that the Biden administration is working to free Iranian assets frozen in South Korea after the US placed economic restrictions on the country.
There are an estimated $7 billion frozen in two banks based in Seoul, YonHap has reported. South Korean foreign ministry confirmed on Wednesday that a deal has been reached to free the assets.
“Our government has been in talks with Iran about ways to use the frozen assets, and the Iran side has expressed its consent to the proposals we have made,” the ministry said in a statement. “The actual unfreezing of the assets will be carried out through consultations with related countries, including the United States.”
Tensions between the two Asian countries reached a peak in early January this year when Iran seized a South Korean oil tanker.
The news has arrived as Biden administration attempts to reframe the relationship with Iran after the economic sanctions and increased hostilities imposed during former President Donald Trump’s tenure. On Monday, Iran announced that it would cease giving permission to snap inspections by the International Atomic Energy Agency.
The Biden administration has also refused to “lash out” at an attack on a U.S. base in Iraq by what is being suspected are Iran-backed militia, although it did condemn the rocket attacks.