UPI in English  |   UPI Arabic  |   UPI en Español  |   UPIU

Iran threatens to choke gulf tanker lanes

Published By United Press International
TEHRAN, July 3 (UPI) -- Members of the Iranian Parliament announced they put forward a measure to block oil tanker traffic through the Strait of Hormuz.

Around 100 of the 290 members of Parliament thus far have backed the measure to block oil tanker traffic for countries that have enacted sanctions against Iran.

Ramin Mehmanparast, a spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry, said Tuesday the measure reflected the will of the Iranian people.

"The Parliament members are the nation's representatives and they reflect the Iranian nation's views and the Iranian nation's public opinion about the hostile moves against the country," he was quoted by the semiofficial Fars News agency as saying.

U.S. and European sanctions targeting Iran's energy sector went into force last weekend. Sanctions were meant as punishment for Iran's controversial nuclear program, which Tehran maintains is peaceful.

Roughly 20 percent of the oil traded on global markets passed through the Strait of Hormuz last year.

Similar threats to close the Strait of Hormuz sent oil prices higher, sparking concerns about the health of the global economy. Major oil suppliers such as Saudi Arabia, however, have since given assurances that markets were well supplied.
© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.

Photo Gallery
1 of 1
Tour de France concludes in Paris
Race winner Bradley Wiggins of Great Britain (C) stands between second place finisher Christopher Froome of Great Britain (L) and third place finisher Vincenzo Nibali of Italy on the presentation podium following the final stage of the Tour de France in Paris on July 22, 2012. Wiggins of Great Britain became that country's first ever overall winner of the Tour de France. UPI/David Silpa