Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The usual suspects...

...diplomacy in action.

The State Department announced on Tuesday that it would exempt 10
European countries and Japan from penalties for doing business with
Iran's central bank, because those countries are making significant
progress toward weaning themselves off of Iranian oil.

"I am pleased to announce that an initial group of eleven countries
has significantly reduced their volume of crude oil purchases from
Iran -- Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Italy,
Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and the United Kingdom. As a
result, I will report to the Congress that sanctions pursuant to
Section 1245 of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2012 (NDAA)
will not apply to the financial institutions based in these countries,
for a renewable period of 180 days," Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton said in a Tuesday statement. "The actions taken by these
countries were not easy. They had to rethink their energy needs at a
critical time for the world economy and quickly begin to find
alternatives to Iranian oil, which many had been reliant on for their
energy needs."

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