Iran Nuclear NewsFinland moots EU sanctions on Iran

Finland moots EU sanctions on Iran

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ImageAFP: The European Union will unilaterally impose new sanctions on Iran over its disputed nuclear programme if there is no consensus at the UN, Finland's foreign minister said on Saturday. ImageSAARISELKA, Finland (AFP) — The European Union will unilaterally impose new sanctions on Iran over its disputed nuclear programme if there is no consensus at the UN, Finland's foreign minister said on Saturday.

"I think we'll be able to convince China and Russia and I'm confident that we'll get something at the UN Security Council," Alexander Stubb said on the sidelines of a meeting of his peers in Finland.

"Failing (this) there would mean unilateral EU sanctions, we would do it unilaterally within the European Union," he said, adding: "There is consensus enough."

Western governments, particularly the United States and France, are seeking further sanctions on Tehran in the hope of stopping the Islamic republic's nuclear drive, which they suspect may be aimed at acquiring atomic weapons.

Iran says its nuclear programme is for purely peaceful purposes.

Of the five permanent Security Council members, currently only China opposes new measures against Iran.

The 15-strong UN Security Council has five permanent veto-wielding members: Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States.

Adoption of a resolution requires at least nine votes from the council and no veto from the permanent members.

But Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, who is also attending the same meeting in Finland, said Anakara opposed new sanctions.

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