'US will likely up sanctions after IAEA report'

US will not go after oil, gas, Central Bank of Iran for now; Russia says release of IAEA report hurts chances of diplomatic solution for Iran.

By REUTERS, JPOST.COM STAFF
November 8, 2011 21:50
1 minute read.
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White House 311. (photo credit: courtesy)

 
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The United States will likely increase sanctions on Iran following the release of an incriminating UN nuclear agency report, a US official told Reuters on Tuesday.

The official added that the US will not target Iran's gas and oil industries or its Central Bank for the time being.

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The US may, however, look into additional Iranian commercial banks and front companies to sanction, adding that sanctioning the Iranian Central Bank is not currently "on the table."


"I think you will see bilateral sanctions increasing," the official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters after the International Atomic Energy Agency said Iran has worked on developing an atomic bomb design and may still be conducting relevant research.

Russia, meanwhile, criticized the release the UN nuclear agency's report on Iran's nuclear program, saying it would reduce hopes for dialogue with Tehran and suggesting it was aimed to scuttle the chances for a diplomatic solution.

"We have serious doubts about the justification for steps to reveal contents of the report to a broad public, primarily because it is precisely now that certain chances for the renewal of dialogue between the 'sextet' of international mediators and Tehran have begun to appear," the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.



It said time was needed to study the report and determine whether it contained new evidence of a military element in Iran's nuclear program or was nothing but "the intentional -- and counterproductive -- whipping up of emotions".

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Iranian threat

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