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Japan extends sanctions against Iran

December 09, 2011

Japan's Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda. — Photo by AFP

TOKYO: Japan on Friday decided to extend its sanctions on Iran after similar moves by other nations to beef up international measures against Tehran's nuclear programme.

The cabinet said it would increase the number of Iranian people and organisations subject to Japanese sanctions, said Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Yukio Edano.

The government added 106 organisations, one individual and three Iranian banks to its sanction list, bringing the total number to 267 organisations, 66 individuals and 20 banks, according to Jiji Press news agency.

The move will not add to restrictions on imports of crude oil from the Islamic republic, the fourth-biggest oil supplier to resource-poor Japan.

Edano said Japan “should be careful” about any halt to crude imports.

Japan last year imposed new sanctions against Iran, including an assets freeze on people and entities linked to its contentious nuclear programme and tighter restrictions on financial transactions.

Japan also said it would suspend any new oil and gas investments in Iran.

Iran maintains its nuclear programme is peaceful, but the West suspects it is developing weapons.

— Dow Jones Newswires contributed to this report —