December 3, 2011- European countries took new steps to isolate Iran even further on Thursday. Foreign ministers from the European Union announced a list of new sanctions placed against entities of Iran in response to the British Embassy being stormed and vandalized on Tuesday.
Many European Union countries pulled their ambassadors out of Tehran during the week, but said they were not opposed to finding diplomacy with Iran. Nevertheless, the EU released a statement expressing very serious concerns over the nuclear program in Iran.
The statement said the 27-member union would impose a number of sanctions against the country, including freezing a number of assets and placing a travel ban on the 180 individuals and companies that are linked to the nuclear program in Iran.
However, the statement from the EU did not indicate a boycott of the energy sector in Iran. Nations such as the UK and France pushed to place energy sanctions, but others such as Greece resisted it due to their great dependence on oil from Iran and the already difficult economic times they face.
The Union’s head of foreign policy, Catherine Ashton said the union was still debating about placing an oil embargo and that oil import restrictions would most likely be placed at some point in the near future. The White House applauded the EU’s decision.