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TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran threatened on Tuesday to take action if the U.S. Navy moves an aircraft carrier into the Gulf, Tehran's most aggressive statement yet after weeks of saber-rattling as new U.S. and EU financial sanctions take a toll on its economy.
The prospect of sanctions targeting the oil sector in a serious way for the first time has hit Iran's rial currency, which has fallen by 40 percent against the dollar in the past month.
Queues formed at banks and some currency exchange offices shut their doors as Iranians scrambled to buy dollars to protect their savings from the currency's fall.
Army chief Ataollah Saleh said the United States had moved an aircraft carrier out of the Gulf from because of Iran's naval exercises, and Iran would take action if the ship returned.
It did not name the carrier, but the USS John C Stennis leads a task force in the region, and the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet website pictured it in the Arabian Sea last week.
"Iran will not repeat its warning ... the enemy's carrier has been moved to the Sea of Oman because of our drill. I recommend and emphasize to the American carrier not to return to the Persian Gulf," army chief Salehi said.
New sanctions signed into law by U.S. President Barack Obama on New Year's Eve would cut off any financial institutions that work with Iran's central bank from the U.S. financial system, blocking the main path for payments for Iranian oil.
The EU is expected to impose new sanctions by the end of this month, possibly including a ban on oil imports.
Even Iran's top trading partner China - which has refused to back new global sanctions against Iran - is demanding discounts to buy Iranian oil as Tehran's options narrow. Beijing has cut its imports of Iranian crude by more than half for January and, paying premiums for crude from Russia and Vietnam to replace it.
Originally posted by TheMindWar
The USA and the west a really tightening the screw on Iran. Personally, i believe Iran should offer a new deal with china to sell oil for chinese currency and at a discounted rate. I really feel sorry for Iran and those iranian children who are suffering because of sanctions.
Personally, I believe the sanctions are both illegal and immoral. The west has lost any credibility it had with me. I used to love my country and was proud to be a "thorough bred" Englishman but now I am just really ashamed to be english.
Originally posted by thoughtsfull
Adding to your list that if the EU places an embargo on Iranian oil imports, the main nations in the EU to import Iranian oil is (I believe) Spain, Greece and Italy..
Originally posted by Xcathdra
Tangle up Iran, which in turn will tangle up the Mideast, placing the bulk of those resources at risk, will force nations, like we jsut saw with China, to get their items elsewhere. The one thing that has been slowing Russia down is the money needed to develop the resources. Maybe this is their way of doing it by promising Iran one thing and throwing them under the bus at the last minute.edit on 3-1-2012 by Xcathdra because: (no reason given)
The rivalry between the two neighboring powers, according to SIPRI, is apparent in the military and energy fields. In a recently published study, the Swedish Institute explains how the success of China in diversifying energy supplies and military cooperation have undermined a decades old alliance. Beijing is increasingly dependent of Moscow, which now looks at the dragon as a veiled threat. "Diplomatic relations remain good, but the key points of collaboration in recent decades - weapons and energy – are deteriorating," says the document. And "Russian influence on China will continue to decline." Beijing once relied on Moscow for arms, but now its progress in the defence industry has transformed it from buyer into competitor. For its part, the Kremlin does not trust its neighbour enough to share its know-how in advanced technology, for which Beijing is rather thirsty.
Originally posted by michael1983l
I can't believe people on here actually think that Iran should be protected. This is a society that is happy to stone a woman to death in front of children, just because she dared to cheat on her husband. The people of Iran may be innocent and do not deserve war, but their government is indefensible and war should be a very realistic option. This government cannot have nuclear weapons.
TEHRAN, Iran — Iran said Tuesday that the steep depreciation in the country’s currency against the U.S. dollar was not linked to U.S. new sanctions targeting its Central Bank, while officials geared up for a meeting to assess possible measures to shore up the riyal in an already ailing economy.