Iranian Parliament Speaker Larijani_311.
(photo credit: Reuters/Caren Firouz )
TEHRAN - Iran's parliament approved a draft bill on Sunday to downgrade diplomatic and economic relations with Britain after London increased sanctions on Tehran over its nuclear program, the official IRNA news agency reported.
RELATED:Israel watches as world rejects Iran sanctionsEU ups heat on Iran, reaches new sanctions deal
the 290-strong parliament, 179 voted in favor, four against and 11
abstained. The bill obliges the government to downgrade ties within two
weeks, a move that would force the ambassador out and leave the British
embassy to be run by a charge d'affaires.
British government, who was joined by the US and Canada, announced two
weeks ago their decision to terminate all dealings with the Central Bank
of Iran, a decision that covers all Iranian banks, branches and
“This measure will protect the UK financial sector from being
unknowingly used by Iranian banks for proliferation related
transactions,” said George Osborne, Britain’s treasury chief.
Iran’s nuclear activities “pose a significant risk to the national
interests of the UK and countries across the region,” he added.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
said Saturday that new sanctions imposed on the Islamic Republic by the
US and other western nations make the prospect of negotiations on
Tehran's nuclear program "more difficult," AFP reported.
"They vote on resolutions, impose sanctions, use all the tools against
us, and they want us to negotiate," Ahmadinejad was quoted as saying on
Rebecca Anna Stoil contributed to this report