We won't budge, declares Iran after new EU curbs
Tehran, October 16, 2012
Tough new European Union sanctions on Iran will not force Tehran back into negotiations with world powers over its nuclear programme, Iran's foreign ministry spokesman said on Tuesday.
"We think the error in calculation which these countries are pursuing will distance them from a favourable result," said Ramin Mehmanparast, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman. "We recommend that instead of taking the wrong approach and being stubborn and using pressure...with a logical approach they can return to discussions."
The European Union agreed further sanctions against Iran's banking, shipping, and industrial sectors on Monday, cranking up financial pressure on Tehran in the hope of drawing it into serious negotiations on its nuclear programme. The West suspects Iran is aiming to develop an atomic bomb. Tehran denies this.
The new EU sanctions also target major Iranian state companies in the oil and gas industry and the central bank.
Among the more than 30 companies and institutions listed in the EU's Official Journal as targets for asset freezes in Europe was the National Iranian Oil Company, one of the world's largest oil exporters.
The US imposed restrictions on NIOC last month as western governments seek to curb the Islamic Republic's ability to obtain funds through oil exports worldwide.
In Tuesday's listing, the EU also targeted NIOC subsidiaries, the National Iranian Gas Company, National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Company and the state firm overseeing the tanker industry. Several banks were also listed. - Reuters