International sanctions against Iran
Brussels - International sanctions against Iran focus on key sectors such as defence, finance and oil with the aim of getting Tehran to end its controversial nuclear programme. Over time, the United Nations and the European Union have adopted increasingly tough measures.
Since 2006, the Security Council has approved four series of sanctions:
- Resolution 1737 (December 23 2006) imposes economic and commercial sanctions against ten entities linked to Tehran's nuclear and ballistic programmes. The assets of these entities and of 12 prominent figures are frozen.
- Resolution 1747 (March 24 2007) freezes the assets of 13 new entities linked to the nuclear programme or the Iranian Revolutionary Guards. There is also an embargo on Iranian arms purchases and restrictions on loans to Iran.
- Resolution 1803 (March 3 2008) hits more entities and individuals with a foreign assets freeze and travel ban. It also bans the supply of dual use items (civil and military) to Iran.
- Resolution 1929 (June 9 2010) places new restrictions on Iranian investments and bans the sale to Iran of certain heavy arms (tanks, combat aircraft and helicopters). More names added to sanctions list.
Washington first imposed sanctions in the 1980s, banning businesses and individual Americans from trading with Iran except with Treasury Department approval.
- In 2008, the United States introduces further financial restrictions by banning American banks from acting as an intermediary for the transit of funds to and from Iran.
- In July 2010, a law targets the supply of petrol to Iran, which is highly dependent on refined products, and punishes foreign groups investing in the Iranian oil sector.
- In November 2011, Washington beefs up its sanctions against individuals supporting the development of Iran's oil sector.
- In December 2011, the assets of foreign financial institutions that trade with the Iranian Central Bank in the petrol sector are frozen.
- Since then, Washington has led a campaign with the aim of reducing the volume of Iranian oil exports. Japan has announced that it would reduce imports but India and China, major customers, resist pressure to do so, as does Russia which advocates dialogue with Tehran.
- July 26 2010, the European Union bans technical assistance or the transfer of oil technologies to Iran and the activity of some Iranian banks and adds names to the United Nations list of individuals banned from travelling. The measures focus on the Iranian Revolutionary Guards.
- In May and December 2011, the assets of 243 Iranian entities and around 40 more individuals are frozen and visa bans applied.
- January 19 2012. The European Union reaches an agreement in principle to ban most transactions with the Iranian Central Bank. A decision must be taken by January 23 on the imposition of a possible oil embargo by July.