Iran has formally banned all oil and gas exports to the European Union, an official said on January 27.
Oil Ministry spokesman Ali Reza Nikzad Rahbar told the semiofficial Mehr news agency that the ban will remain in effect as long as "hostile decisions" continue to be made by the EU.
The Iranian ban is expected to have limited effect since the 27-member bloc already has imposed its own boycott on Iranian energy as part of its package of sanctions over Iran's disputed nuclear program.
Before the EU ban took effect last year, sales to the EU accounted for about 18 percent of Iran's oil and gas exports.
The United States and many other countries fear that Iran is attempting to develop nuclear weapons.
Iran maintains its nuclear program is exclusively peaceful.
Based on reporting by AP and trend.az
Copyright (c) 2013 RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036. www.rferl.org
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