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Eastern Europe calls on Iran not to stop oil exports

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Oil refinery of Swiss firm Petroplus in Petit-Couronne, near Rouen, northwestern France.

A senior Iranian lawmaker says a number of Eastern European countries have called on the Islamic Republic not to approve a bill which will stop the country’s oil exports to the European Union member states.

Member of Iran Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Committee Mohammad-Karim Abedi said on Tuesday some of the European countries have asked for more time before imposing a ban on the country’s crude oil exports to Europe, adding that the ambassadors of some other European states, such as France, have attended Majlis to call for Tehran’s restraint against approving the bill.

“… a number of Eastern European countries’ envoys [to Tehran] in confidential messages have called on Iran’s Majlis not to pass the bill on stopping [Iranian] oil exports to Europe,” the lawmaker added.

On Saturday, January 28, Majlis Energy Committee said it has finalized a draft bill to put an end to the country’s oil exports to the EU member states.

The committee added that based on the double-urgency bill, the Islamic Republic would halt all oil exports to the European countries as long as they continue to ban oil imports from Iran.

In their January 23 meeting in Brussels, EU foreign ministers imposed new sanctions on Iran which include a ban on purchasing oil from the country, a freeze on the assets of Iran’s Central Bank within the EU, and a ban on the sale of diamonds, gold and other precious metals to Iran.

The sanctions will become fully effective as of July 1, 2012, to give EU member states enough time to adjust to new conditions and find alternative crude oil supplies.

The United States, Israel and some of their allies accuse Tehran of pursuing military objectives in its nuclear program and have used this pretext to impose four rounds of sanctions and a series of unilateral sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

Iran has refuted the allegations, arguing that as a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Tehran is entitled to use nuclear technology for peaceful use.


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