Iran General NewsSchlumberger's Iran sale raises questions

Schlumberger’s Iran sale raises questions

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ImageUPI: The U.S. oil-services firm Schlumberger is using a legal loophole to supply machines with radioactive chemicals to Iran, The Boston Globe reported Sunday.

United Press International

ImageBOSTON, Dec. 7 (UPI) — The U.S. oil-services firm Schlumberger is using a legal loophole to supply machines with radioactive chemicals to Iran, The Boston Globe reported Sunday.

The Globe says its investigation revealed the company has sold a 2,000-pound drilling tool to Iran powered by a kind of radioactive chemical that scientists say could fuel a so-called "dirty bomb." U.S. officials have sought to keep the chemical out of Iranian hands, but Schlumberger made the sale using a legal loophole allowing multinational corporations to employ foreign subsidiaries to sidestep U.S. sanctions, the Globe said.

"Our sanctions laws are useless as long as loopholes exist," U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., told the newspaper. "U.S. technology and innovation should not be transferred to the benefit of the Iranian regime."

Schlumberger acknowledges its drilling tool has been used in Iran, but a company spokesman pointed out the multinational followed "all applicable laws and regulations."

Victor Comras, a specialist on international trade embargoes, said Schlumberger's oil tools sale to Iran "is certainly activity that goes against the spirit, if not the letter, of the law."

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