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U.N. puts broader sanctions on Iran over nuclear program

Arms exports are barred and financial assets of 28 individuals and organizations are frozen.

Published March 25, 2007


UNITED NATIONS - The U.N. Security Council voted unanimously Saturday to approve a resolution that bans Iranian arms exports and freezes some of the financial assets of 28 individuals and entities linked to Iran's military and nuclear agencies for its refusal to stop enriching uranium.

The 15-0 vote added to sanctions placed on Iran in December and came one day after President Mahmoud Admadinejad canceled plans to travel to New York to confront the Security Council, leaving his foreign minister to speak in his place. It unfolded as 15 British sailors and marines seized by Iranian naval forces were transferred to Tehran, escalating tensions between the two countries.

The Security Council imposed the latest sanctions in response to Iran's refusal to abide by repeated U.N. demands to stop its most sensitive nuclear activities, including the enrichment of uranium and the reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel.

The council threatened to impose new penalties on Iran after 60 days if it fails to stop its nuclear activities and provide verifiable assurance that it is not secretly pursuing a nuclear weapon.

The measures fell far short of the punishing trade, travel and military sanctions initially proposed by the United States and its European partners. But they said they were pleased.

"We got more than we thought we were going to get" in this resolution, said Nicholas Burns, U.S. undersecretary of state for political affairs. He also said that it criminalizes Iran's military support for Middle East extremists and exposes its political isolation.

Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki told the council after the vote that its action was "unlawful, unnecessary and unjustifiable" and that "pressure and intimidation" would not force Iran to abandon its right, under the 1970 Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, to develop nuclear energy.

In December, the Security Council ordered all countries to stop supplying Iran with materials and technology that could contribute to its nuclear and missile programs. It also ordered a freeze on assets of 10 key Iranian companies and 12 individuals related to those programs.

Iran responded by expanding enrichment, a process that can be used to produce nuclear energy or nuclear weapons.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.

Fast Facts:


Key elements of the U.N. resolution

The U.N. Security Council imposed new sanctions on Iran over its nuclear program, expanding on sanctions approved in December. The key points of the new measures:

- A ban on Iranian arms exports and on any country buying Iranian weapons.

- A call on all nations "to exercise vigilance and restraint" in supplying tanks, combat aircraft and other heavy weapons to Iran.

- An asset freeze on 15 individuals and 13 organizations and companies.

- A call on all governments and financial institutions not to make any new commitments "of grants, financial assistance, or concessional loans" to the Iranian government.

- A call on all countries to exercise "vigilance and restraint" on the entry or transit through their territory of the individuals who provide support or are involved with Iran's nuclear activities.

- A requirement that all countries report the transit or entry of any of people whose assets have been frozen to the Security Council committee monitoring sanctions against Iran.

[Last modified March 25, 2007, 01:19:25]

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