BEIJING - China criticized the European Union on Tuesday for imposing new sanctions on Iran over its controversial nuclear program, calling again for talks to resolve the stand-off.

The EU governments' sanctions target major Iranian state companies in the oil and gas industry, and strengthen restrictions on the central bank, cranking up pressure on the country which has close trade ties with Beijing.

China is Iran's largest crude oil customer and, along with Russia, has resisted putting sanctions on Tehran.

Please LIKE our Facebook page - it makes us stronger