US officials want halt to indirect Israel imports of Iranian nuts

By
November 21, 2007 18:24

 
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It's not just Iran's nuclear program that's causing problems for Israel and the US - it's also Iran's pistachio nuts. The reddish nuts are landing in Israeli shops after funneling through Turkey, violating Israeli law that bans all Iranian imports and angering American officials who are urging Israel to crack down as part of their attempt to keep Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. US Undersecretary of Agriculture Mark Keenum said in a meeting with Israeli officials in Rome on Monday that the pistachio imports must stop, a US official confirmed Wednesday. Both the US and Israel have been pushing for new UN sanctions to persuade Iran to abandon its nuclear program. Iran insists its ambitions are peaceful. "This causes great anger, especially since pistachios succeed in coming in through a third country," Israeli Agriculture Minister Shalom Simchon told Israeli Radio. "This has to do with the sanctions but also with the competition between American farmers and Iranian farmers, and we are trying to deal with this."

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