The United Nations Security Council has approved a fourth round of sanctions against Iran for its controversial nuclear program. Twelve of the 15 Council members voted for the sanctions resolution Wednesday. Brazil and Turkey voted "no" and Lebanon abstained from voting.
The sanctions resolution includes travel bans and
financial restrictions against people and groups linked to Iran's nuclear and
ballistic missile activities, including the Revolutionary Guard Corps and the
Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines.
It also expands a U.N. arms embargo against Tehran and targets the Iranian banking sector.
U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice said the sanctions
were not aimed at the Iranian people, but at the nuclear ambitions of a
government that chose a path to further isolation.
Brazil's ambassador said sanctions were not an effective instrument and could lead to the suffering of the Iranian people. She also said sanctions would endanger an agreement brokered by Brazil under which Iran would send some of its uranium to Turkey in exchange for reactor fuel.
Representatives from both countries expressed concern Wednesday that the United States, Russia and France did not formally respond to the plan until hours before Wednesday's vote.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has warned that new sanctions could mean the end of Iran's willingness to negotiate with world powers on its nuclear program.
Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.
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