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Iran won't give up "peaceful" uranium enrichment activities

01-05-2012 13:59 BJT

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EU member states have agreed on an oil embargo against Iran to pressure the country over its nuclear program. But Iran is responding to increasing sanctions with the vow to never give up its "peaceful" uranium enrichment activities.

The EU moves towards an oil ban on Iran. The sanctions will be formally announced at an EU foreign ministers’ meeting at the end of January.

A man looks at the rates outside a currency exchange in a shopping center in Tehran. The
European Union and the United States tightened the sanctions noose around Iran, with
diplomats in Brussels saying a preliminary agreement had been reached on an EU embargo of
Iranian oil. (AFP Photo/Atta Kenare)

Following an International Atomic Energy Agency report on Iran’s nuclear program issued in November, France urged the EU to have stricter sanctions to show its determination.

And the US, which has applied tough financial measures on Iran, welcomed the news. The UN Security Council has already passed four rounds of sanctions against Iran for refusing to halt uranium enrichment.

Oil prices spiked close to eight-month highs on Wednesday as the EU moved closer to
an Iran oil embargo and Tehran warned the US to remove its naval forces from the Gulf.
(AFP Photo/Ki Price)

Iran has dismissed threat brought by the sanctions, although the Iranian currency, the rial, has lost about 12% of its value since they were applied.

It also denies the West’s suspicions that it is producing nuclear weapons. Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said Wednesday that Iran’s nuclear program is totally peaceful and is a basic right of the nation.

But the news of the EU embargo caused oil prices to spike, with Brent crude peaking at nearly 114 US dollars a barrel in intraday trading, up nearly 2% from Tuesday’s close.

As the EU currently accounts for around 17% of Iranian oil exports, some hold the embargo may force Iran to find new buyers.

 

Editor:Zhang Dan |Source: CNTV.CN

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