Lawmaker: Iran to Stop Oil Sales to Europe This Week

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iran's Parliament will approve a bill on Sunday requiring the government to immediately halt oil exports to Europe, a prominent lawmaker said after the European Union complied with the United States' hostile policies against Iran and decided to ban oil imports from the country.

The law to be debated in Iran's parliament on Sunday could halt exports of oil to the European Union as early as next week, Vice-Chairman of the Parliament's National Security and Foreign Policy Commission Hossein Ibrahimi told FNA on Friday.

"On Sunday, the parliament will have to approve a 'double emergency' bill calling for a halt in the export of Iranian oil to Europe starting next week," Ibrahimi said.

Parliament is pushing for the export ban to deny the EU a 6-month phase-in of the embargo on Iranian oil that the bloc agreed on Monday as part of a raft of tough new western sanctions aimed at forcing Iran to curb its civilian nuclear program.

Also, member of the Parliament's Energy Commission Moayed Hosseini Sadr told FNA that "if the deputies arrive at the conclusion that the Iranian oil exports to Europe must be halted, the parliament will not delay a moment (in passing the bill)".

"If Iran's oil exports to Europe, which is about 18 percent (of Iran's total oil exports) come to a halt, the Europeans will surely be taken by surprise, and will understand the power of Iran and will realize that the Islamic establishment will not succumb to the Europeans' policies," he said.

Meantime, Iran's OPEC governor Mohammad Ali Khatibi told the Iranian labors news agency that the country might choose to raise the issue at the next meeting of the oil cartel.