“Sanctions debate heats up with familiar arguments”

“Sanctions debate heats up with familiar arguments”
October 4-15, 2009
     The US Congress has passed bills punishing companies with ties to Iran’s energy sector as calls for more sanctions against Iran are being raised in the US. John Hannah cites unnamed Iranian activists and Karim Sadjadpour to argue that, despite the negative effects of sanctions on Iranian citizens, the opposition Green Movement wants sanctions “in strong doses”, with some even supporting military action, to pressure and ultimately topple Iran’s leaders (Los Angeles Times). However, opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi recently stated that the Green Movement opposes sanctions.
     Tarek El-Tablawy argues that sanctions may actually strengthen Iran’s leaders and the Revolutionary Guard, which is already deeply involved in the economy, by eliminating foreign competitors and leading to an expansion of the black market (Associated Press). Charlie Savage and Mark Landler argue that Iran is able to adapt to sanctions, outlining cases of sanctions violations and Iran’s shifting of business ties to Asian financial institutions.
     Michael Jacobson states that while sanctions cannot isolate Iran, they pressure Iran’s leaders to engage in international talks by increasing the cost of doing business (New York Times). Iran’s parliament will vote next week on a bill cutting energy and food subsidies to reduce the country’s vulnerability to sanctions. The proposed bill, which would likely increase inflation, could indicate that the threat of sanctions is having an effect (Reuters).
     Chinese and Russian leaders have indicated they do not support imposing new sanctions on Iran (New York Times (2)).
Los Angeles Times | Reuters | Associated Press | New York Times | New York Times (2)

Related posts:
“Green Movement urged to defend nuclear rights, oppose Western sanctions”

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