Iran Drafts Bill to Block Straits of Hormuz Following Embargo

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July 2, 2012

Satellite image of the Strait of Hormuz

LONDON–Iran has drafted a bill to block the Strait of Hormuz for oil tankers from states that support oil sanctions, an Iranian lawmaker said Monday.

In remarks posted on Iran’s parliamentary website Icana, Ibrahim Agha Mohammadi, a member of the parliament’s national security and foreign policy commission, said the bill was for “blocking of oil tanker traffic carrying oil to countries that have sanctioned Iran” after the European Union Sunday implemented an embargo on Iranian oil.

Iran has long threatened to close the Strait of Hormuz, a narrow waterway dividing Iran and the United Arab Emirates through which pass some 35% of all seaborne-traded oil and 20% of all oil traded globally. Middle Eastern producers including Saudi Arabia and Iraq have been mulling alternative routes, but any closure would at the very least result in a time-lag for crude reaching consuming countries.

Mr. Mohammadi said the bill had the support of 100 of the parliament’s 290 members, and was to exercise Iran’s “sovereignty of internal waters and against an unfair and cruel oil embargo.”

– By Benoit Faucon, Dow Jones Newswires

Copyright © 2012 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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