Iraq rejects report it is helping Iran avoid sanctions

BAGHDAD - Iraq on Monday said its trade and financial ties with Iran were in compliance with international law, rejecting a report it was helping its neighbor get around US and European sanctions imposed because of Tehran's nuclear program.
The US government in December signed a law imposing sanctions on financial institutions dealing with Iran's central bank, the main channel for its oil revenues and the European Union has also announced a ban on Iranian oil shipments.
The New York Times reported at the weekend that Iraq has helped Iran skirt sanctions on Tehran, using financial institutions and oil-smuggling operations that are providing Iran with a crucial flow of dollars.
The newspaper, citing sources in Washington, current and former American and Iraqi officials and banking and oil experts, said Washington has privately complained to Iraqi officials about financial and logistical ties between Baghdad and Tehran.