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Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Sanctions? What sanctions?

Two NATO members are leading the way in busting the sanctions that are designed to convince Iran from developing nuclear weapons.

On Sunday, Turkey and Iran signed a joint economic commission accord that is meant to triple trade between the two countries over the next five years.
"There is a political determination in the two countries to develop relations further," Iran's Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi, was quoted by state-run Anatolian news agency as saying on Sunday, when Turkey and Iran signed a joint economic commission accord in Tehran.

The cooperation talks spanned areas such as transport, industry and customs, Anatolian said.

Turkish State Minister Cevdet Yilmaz also set a target of $30 billion trade volume, without specifying a time frame.

Their bilateral trade volume rose to $10.7 billion last year from about e1 billion in 2000, Yilmaz said. Turkey's exports to Iran stood at $3.44 billion last year, making it Turkey's 10th biggest export market.

Washington has increased pressure on Ankara to enforce sanctions against Iran.

Turkey says it observes United Nations sanctions against Iran but declares it is not obligated to adhere to a separate U.S. embargo that targets Iranian energy.

The U.S. Treasury last week blacklisted six individuals and five business entities in Iran and Turkey for providing materials and support to Iran's ballistic missile development efforts.
Meanwhile, Germany's continued refusal to shut down the Europäisch-Iranische Handelsbank in Hamburg has prompted a bipartisan group of 11 US Senators to protest to German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle.
While the tone of the letter noted that Germany shares the concerns of the international community about Iran’s human rights violations, nuclear program, and support for terrorism, the senators ratcheted up the language by saying, “Yet, the continued operation of EIH allows the Iranian regime to skirt the sanctions and undercut their effectiveness.”

In short, the senators are charging the German government with being an accomplice to busting Iranian sanctions, and in connection with not stopping Iran’s drive to obtain nuclear weapons. The German Foreign Ministry says that they are reviewing the letter and will issue a reply.
Here's the full letter:
Letter to Minister Westerwelle - 2-1-2011

What could go wrong?

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At 3:34 PM, Blogger Juniper in the Desert said...



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