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UK's Hague: No need for new sanctions measures on Iran

Source: Reuters - Mon, 22 Apr 2013 11:19 GMT
Author: Reuters
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LUXEMBOURG, April 22 (Reuters) - The European Union should focus on implementing its current sanctions against Iran over Tehran's nuclear programme rather than imposing new measures for the moment, Britain's Foreign Secretary William Hague said on Monday.

Hague was speaking days after U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry asked for patience from U.S. senators pressing for tougher sanctions over Tehran's nuclear ambitions, saying there is uncertainty in Iran two months before its June 14 election.

Hague said economic pressure from Europe was increasing on the Islamic Republic, thanks to wide sanctions against banking and industry imposed on Iran last year, and there was time to wait with more.

"We must maintain (current) sanctions pressure, not proposing new ones," he told reporters ahead of a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Luxembourg.

Western governments hope economic pressure will persuade Tehran to scale back its most sensitive nuclear work, which they fear has a covert military goal.

Iran rejects such accusations and says it enriches uranium to increase electricity supplies and for medical purposes. (Reporting by Justyna Pawlak, writing by Adrian Croft; editing by Rex Merrifield)

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