November 21, 2011

Britain has severed all ties with Iranian banks as part of a package of sanctions from the US, UK and Canada aimed at confronting Tehran’s nuclear programme.

The chancellor, George Osborne, announced the measures on Monday. The unprecedented move meant all UK credit and financial institutions had to cease trading with Iran’s banks from the afternoon.

“We believe that the Iranian regime’s actions pose a significant threat to the UK’s national security and the international community,” Osborne said. “Today’s announcement is a further step to preventing the Iranian regime from acquiring nuclear weapons.”

Downing Street said the move was expected to be discussed by EU foreign ministers in 10 days, and it hoped that other countries may follow the lead and intensify sanctions.

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