Australia welcomes Iran sanctions

17:00, June 10, 2010      

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Australia on Thursday welcomed a new round of sanctions against Iran aimed at curbing its nuclear program.

The United Nations (UN) Security Council voted in favor of a fourth round of military and financial sanctions against Iran, and Australia has pledged to implement them as soon as possible.

"The new sanctions reflect the international community's continuing deep concerns about Iran's nuclear program and its ongoing failure to comply with its international obligations," Foreign Minister Stephen Smith said in a statement.

"Australia stands ready to support further tough measures, including additional autonomous sanctions, to persuade Iran to address the international community's concerns about its nuclear program."

Tehran said its uranium enrichment program is for peaceful civilian purposes, while countries like the United States argue it is aimed at developing nuclear weapons.

Smith said the International Atomic Energy Agency had found that Iran was still enriching uranium, in breach of its obligations, and was not co-operating enough with authorities.

The new UN sanctions have expanded an arms embargo, ban Iran from uranium mining, authorized states to inspect vessels on their way to Iran, and added 40 names to a list of people who face travel and financial sanctions.

Smith has warned any Australian company or individual doing business with Iran that penalties for contravening the sanctions were severe.



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