Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon called on China to reconsider it policy on Iran, Israel Radio reported Thursday.

Ayalon's comments came after it was revealed that China - the world's biggest buyer of Iranian oil - is using its currency the yuan to purchase Iranian crude due to sanctions on the Islamic Republic by the United States which prevent the People's Republic from buying in dollars. Iran is using the revenue to buy Chinese goods and services, an Iranian diplomat said this week.

Meeting with China's special envoy to the Middle East, Wu Sika, Ayalon said Beijing should join Western nations in casting tough sanctions on Tehran over its nuclear program, which Israel has said it believes is aimed at producing an atomic bomb.

Ayalon said such efforts were important in order to increase political and economic pressure on Iran to change its policy and adhere to international obligations surrounding its nuclear development.

Israel has called on Iran to halt all uranium enrichment, to transfer out all enriched uranium in the country's territory, and fulfill its international obligations. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu relayed that list of demands to EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton - who represents Europe in discussions with Iran - this week.

Iran has come under fire for its nuclear development because the Islamic Republic failed to declare its uranium enrichment program, which has become the crux of its recent and upcoming negotiations with the P1+5 group of nations.

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