29 July 2010
The Australian government announced new restrictions on business dealings with Iran in the oil and gas sector. The sanctions follow those announced earlier in the week by the European Union and Canada. They are the latest in a series of measures taken by the international community in an effort to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons.
"In adopting this package, Australia stands at the forefront of international community efforts to have Iran meet its international obligations in relation to its nuclear program, one of the most serious security challenges facing the international community," Foreign Minister Stephen Smith said in a statement. The sanctions further reinforce a June UN resolution against Iran that Australia has already implemented.
The additional measures include travel and financial bans against more than 110 businesses and individuals in Iran's financial and transport sectors, and a trade ban on all arms and related material, including anything that could be used for nuclear, missile, chemical and biological weapons development.
For the first time, Australia will restrict business with Iran's oil and gas sector. Smith said the UN Security Council resolution had noted a link between the revenue generated by that sector and funding for Iran's nuclear proliferation activities. Business dealings in uranium mining or involving nuclear or missile technology are also prohibited under the new sanctions, Smith said.
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