Iran adds confusion to Europe oil ban claims

Iran adds confusion to Europe oil ban claims

Iran adds confusion to Europe oil ban claims

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu lays a wreath during a ceremony at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem, marking Israel’s annual day of Holocaust remembrance April 19. REUTERS photo

Iranian Oil Minister said yesterday that Tehran has only stopped crude sales to Britain and France while continuing sales to “other countries” in the world. Yesterday’s remarks by Rostam Qasemi are likely to stir up confusion since they appear to contradict earlier government statements that Tehran has also cut off exports to Greece and Spain.

“We are still selling oil to all of Europe except Britain and France,” Qasemi told a press conference at the International Oil, Gas, Refining and Petrochemical Exhibition, held in northern Tehran.

Two Iranian state-owned broadcasters, Al-Alam and Press TV, last week reported that oil exports to Germany, Spain and Greece had been halted, expanding on a February decision to stop oil sales to France and Britain. The apparent moves by OPEC’s second-biggest producer came in response to new sanctions by the EU which were announced in January and will become fully effective in July. Qasemi contradicted the reports, which also claimed that exports to Italy could soon be stopped. However, Qasemi said that if sanctions imposed by the EU were not lifted by the next round of nuclear talks, then “we will surely cut oil to Europe.”

Compiled from AFP and AP stories by the Daily News staff.

Isreal denounces Iranian threat 

JERUSALEM-Agence France-Presse

Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres denounced Iran’s nuclear program yesterday during a ceremony in Jerusalem to commemorate the Nazi Holocaust that killed six million Jews. “People who refuse to see the Iranian threat have learned nothing from the Shoah (Holocaust). They are afraid to speak the truth, which is today, as it was then (World War II), that there are people who want to annihilate millions of Jews,” the premier said in a holocaust memorial ceremony. Peres linked the Nazi genocide to Iran’s suspected drive to acquire nuclear bombs and its leaders’ repeated references to the destruction of Israel. He said humanity “must learn the lessons of the Holocaust and face existential threats before it is too late.” “Iran is at the center of this threat. It poses a threat to world peace,” he said. As each year on this day, Israelis stand silent for 10 minutes from 0700 GMT.