July 26 European Union foreign ministers adopted extra sanctions on Iran on Monday, targeting investment in its oil and gas industries, limits on financial transfers and a ban on dealing with the state shipping line and air cargo.
Following are details of sanctions imposed on Iran in recent years by the United Nations, United States and European Union:
* EU SANCTIONS
-- The EU has imposed visa bans on senior officials such as Revolutionary Guards chief Mohammad Ali Jafari, former Defence Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar and former atomic energy chief Gholamreza Aghazadeh, and on top nuclear and ballistic experts.
-- Britain announced last October it was freezing business ties with Bank Mellat and Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL), both of which have previously faced sanctions from the United States. Britain cited fears they were involved in helping Iran develop nuclear weapons.
-- The EU measures call on member states to prevent access to airports under their jurisdiction of all cargo flights.
-- Member states must prohibit the provision of insurance and re-insurance to the government of Iran and its entities.
-- The sale or purchase, brokerage or assistance with the issuance of public or public-guaranteed bonds from the government or Iranian central bank or Iranian banks is banned.
-- Import and export of arms and all equipment, items, materials, goods, technology and software that could contribute to uranium enrichment or have a "dual use" is banned.
-- Sale and supply or transfer of equipment and technology used by Iran for refining, liquefied natural gas, exploration or porduction is banned.
-- Any transfer of funds over 40,000 euros will require prior authorisation from the member state concerned.
-- Sums over 10,000 euros not related to foodstuffs or healthcare and medical equipment will require notification.
* U.N. SANCTIONS:
-- The Security Council has imposed four sets of sanctions on Iran, in December 2006, March 2007, March 2008 and June 2010.
-- The first covered sensitive nuclear materials and froze the assets of Iranian individuals and companies linked with the nuclear programme. It gave Iran 60 days to suspend uranium enrichment, a deadline Iran ignored.
-- The second included new arms and financial sanctions. It extended an asset freeze to 28 more groups, companies and individuals engaged in or supporting sensitive nuclear work or development of ballistic missiles, including the state-run Bank Sepah and firms controlled by the Revolutionary Guards.
-- The third increased travel and financial curbs on individuals and companies. It expanded a partial ban on trade in items with both civilian and military uses to cover sales of all such technology to Iran, and added 13 individuals and 12 companies to the list of those suspected of aiding Iran's nuclear and missile programmes.
In September 2008, the Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution again ordering Iran to halt enrichment. Iran again disregarded the order.
-- The Security Council resolution passed on June 9 called for measures against new Iranian banks abroad if a connection to the nuclear or missile programmes is suspected, as well as vigilance over transactions with any Iranian bank, including the central bank.
-- It also expanded a U.N. arms embargo against Tehran and blacklisted three firms controlled by Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines and 15 belonging to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. The resolution also called for setting up a cargo inspection regime similar to one in place for North Korea.
-- Annexed to the draft resolution was a list of 40 companies to be added to an existing U.N. blacklist of firms.
* U.S. SANCTIONS:
-- Sanctions imposed after Iranian students stormed the U.S. embassy and took diplomats hostage in 1979 included a ban on most U.S.-Iran trade.
-- Goods or services from Iran cannot be imported into the United States, either directly or through third countries, with the following exceptions: gifts valued at $100 or less; information or informational materials; foodstuffs intended for human consumption; certain carpets and other textile floor coverings and carpets used as wall hangings.
-- In 1995, President Bill Clinton issued executive orders preventing U.S. companies from investing in Iranian oil and gas and trading with Iran. Tehran has looked for other customers.
-- The same year, Congress passed a law requiring the U.S. government to impose sanctions on foreign firms investing more than $20 million a year in Iran's energy sector. It was extended for five years in September 2006. No foreign firms have yet been penalised, though many have curtailed operations in Iran.
-- In October 2007 Washington imposed sanctions on Bank Melli, Bank Mellat and Bank Saderat and branded the Revolutionary Guards a proliferator of weapons of mass destruction. In October 2009, the Treasury also sanctioned Bank Mellat in Malaysia and its chairman.
-- The Treasury this month added Post Bank of Iran to its list of specially designated proliferators of weapons of mass destruction. It is the 16th bank in Iran that Washington has sought to cut off from the international financial system.
-- The Treasury has identified some 20 petroleum and petrochemical companies as being under Iranian government control -- an action that puts them off-limits to U.S. businesses under a general trade embargo.
-- Congress approved on June 24 tough new unilateral sanctions aimed at squeezing Iran's energy and banking sectors, which could also hurt companies from other countries doing business with Tehran.
-- The legislation will sanction companies for supplying Iran with refined petroleum products with a fair market value exceeding $1 million or that during a 12-month period have an aggregate fair market value of $5 million or more. Firms that violate the sanctions will face penalties such as being banned from the U.S. financial system or being denied US contracts.
-- The legislation also imposes sanctions on international banking institutions involved with Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, its nuclear programme or what Washington calls its support for terrorist activity. It effectively deprives foreign banks of access to the U.S. financial system if they do business with key Iranian banks or the Revolutionary Guards. -- U.S. sanctions against Iran can be found on the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control website: here and here (Writing by David Cutler, London Editorial Reference Unit; editing by Maria Golovnina) (email@example.com; +44 20 7542 7968; Reuters Messaging: firstname.lastname@example.org))