WASHINGTON - The chairman of the US Senate Banking Committee said on Thursday he does not support any new sanctions on Iran now, saying he agrees with the Obama administration that such legislation could disrupt delicate negotiations seeking to curb Iran's nuclear program.

"We should not do anything counterproductive that might shatter western unity on this issue," Democratic Senator Tim Johnson, chairman of the panel, which oversees sanctions legislation in the Senate, said at a hearing.

"We should make sure that if the talks fail, it was Iran that caused their failure. We should not give Iran, the P5+1 countries or other nations a pretext to lay responsibility for their collapse on us," he said.

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