The British and German governments said on Tuesday that they are aware of the allegation that aviation fuel was not provided to Iranian planes but have denied refusing to refuel passenger planes from Iran.
BP will not fuel
'Nuke talks in
Sept., with conditions'
“At present, Her Majesty’s Government is not aware of any occasion when fuel has been refused in the UK,” a government spokesman said.
A German Foreign Ministry spokeswoman told The Jerusalem Post
“refueling does not fall under UN sanctions” for Iranian passenger
A spokesman for Frankfurt International Airport told the Post that
“freight and passenger” planes departed yesterday for Mashad and
passenger planes were slated to depart for Teheran Tuesday and
The German Transportation Ministry reiterated the position of the
Foreign Ministry that UN and EU sanctions do not call for an embargo
against refueling Iranian commercial planes.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday that British oil giant BP
refused to refuel Iranian airliners after the US Congress passed a new
round of tightened sanctions against Iran last week. The Iranian
statecontrolled ISNA news organization issued conflicting reports on the
delivery of fuel.
According to one ISNA article, the secretary of the Iranian Airlines
Union said Germany, the United Kingdom and and the UAE had refused to
provide aviation fuel to Iran Air and Mahan Airlines. However, a second
ISNA dispatch reported that Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramian
Mehmanparast termed the reports “false,” calling them part of an effort
to create a “psychological climate against Iran.”
Iran said in a letter to the European Union that it’s ready for talks on
the country’s nuclear program but that the EU must first guarantee
there would be no threats against Teheran, state TV reported on Tuesday.
The TV station said the letter was sent by Iran’s top nuclear
negotiator, Saeed Jalili, to EU’s foreign policy chief, Catherine
Ashton, detailing Teheran’s conditions for the talks.
It followed President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s announcement a week ago in
which he said Teheran would not hold such talks until late August, to
“punish” the West for the latest UN sanctions imposed on Iran. The EU
and the US have also imposed their own additional and tougher sanctions
against Iran to curtail its nuclear program.
In his speech, Ahmadinejad accused world powers of approving the latest
sanctions to give them the upper hand in talks on the issue.
He also set three conditions for an eventual resumption of talks, saying
countries who want to participate should make clear whether they oppose
Israel’s purported atomic arsenal, whether they support the
Nonproliferation Treaty and whether they want to be friends or enemies
However, he said, participation in the talks was not contingent on the
Meanwhile, China balked Tuesday at the increased US sanctions against
Iran last week over its nuclear program, criticizing the US for
unilaterally expanding on the UN sanctions. Beijing said Tuesday that
the United States and other countries should not expand on the latest UN
China did not exercise its veto power last month when the UN Security
Council approved sanctions that target Iran’s Revolutionary Guard,
ballistic missiles and nuclear-related investments.
The US followed that up when President Barack Obama signed a bill
Thursday that imposed tough unilateral sanctions against exports of
gasoline and other refined petroleum products to Iran. It also bans US
banks from doing business with foreign banks providing services to
Iran’s Revolutionary Guard.
“China supports the UN sanctions. China believes that countries should
have correct implementation of the sanctions instead of expanding the
sanctions,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang told a news conference.
As a permanent member of the Security Council and key Iranian ally,
China could have vetoed the sanctions, but after considerable
international pressure it agreed to support them.
But China has said its support for sanctions should not block efforts to
find a diplomatic solution, and has called for renewed attempts to
bring Iran back to the negotiating table.
China’s bilateral trade with Iran reached at least $36.5 billion last
year. Iran meets 11 percent of China’s energy needs and Chinese
companies have major investments in Iranian energy extraction projects
and the construction of roads, bridges and power plants.AP and Jerusalem Post staff
contributed to this report.