Russia 'disappointed', West imposes more sanctions on Iran

More West sanctions came despite Turkey-Brazil efforts that yielded a nuclear swap deal with Iran.

Russia 'disappointed', West imposes more sanctions on Iran

Russia sharply criticised the United States and the European Union on Thursday for planning sanctions against Iran on top of the measures approved by the U.N. Security Council last week, Interfax reported.

European Union leaders imposed tighter sanctions against Iran on Thursday, including measures to block investment in the oil and gas sector and curtail refining and natural gas capability.

The deputy foreign minister called unilateral U.S. and EU sanctions "harmful" and warned the West it risks losing Moscow's vote over Iran.

"We are extremely disappointed that neither the United States nor the European Union is heeding our calls to refrain from such steps," Interfax and Itar-Tass news agencies news quoted Sergei Ryabkov as saying.

More West sanctions came despite Turkey-Brazil efforts that yielded a nuclear swap deal with Iran.

"We are drawing certain conclusions from this, including about the prospects for joint work" within the U.N. Security Council and the group of six nations leading global efforts to ensure Iran does not develop nuclear arms.

Unilateral sanctions that go beyond U.N. measures "are not just harmful, they undermine the very foundation of our joint work with our partners in the sextet and the Security Council".

The sextet refers to the five veto-wielding permanent Security Council members -- Russia, the United States, China, Britain and France -- plus Germany.

"More sanctions"

The measures go substantially beyond the sanctions the United Nations agreed on June 10.

Turkey and Brazil voted against it while Lebanon abstained. However, there were 12 votes in favor of the resolution.

The sanctions will focus on trade, including dual-use items, banking and insurance, Iran's transport sector, including shipping and air cargo, and key sectors of the gas and oil industry.

The energy sector sanctions will prohibit "new investment, technical assistance and transfers of technologies, equipment and services related to these areas, in particular related to refining, liquefaction and Liquefied Natural Gas technology", the heads of state and government said in their conclusions.

The measures go beyond what some diplomats had foreseen and are likely to put strong financial pressure on Iran, which is the world's fifth largest crude oil exporter but has little refining capability.

At the same time, Ryabkov reiterated that Russia interprets that the U.N. sanctions prohibit it from delivering S-300 surface-to-air missile systems to Iran under a contract the United States has urged Moscow to fail its pledges.

Agencies

Last Mod: 17 Haziran 2010, 16:18
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