On 18 March, the newspaper Kayhan published a political analysis of the “defeat of the financial terrorism of the West against Iran” and of how financial sanctions against Iran have historically failed. According to the article, the West was defeated in its attempts to isolate Iran and to stop its nuclear programme. The analysis also provides detailed examples of how Western powers had systematically used economic instruments as political leverage against Iran, and argues that Iran today is by no means isolated. As evidence, the article points to the various contracts for the development of some 10 oil and gas installations worth USD 61 billion that have been signed with various foreign governments or companies over the past 20 months. These include: a contract worth USD 107 million signed with Italian company Edison International, concerning drilling in the Persian Gulf; a contract worth USD 500 million with a Belarusian oil company to expand an oil installation; two contracts totaling over USD 18 billion signed with Chinese companies; contracts worth around USD 15 billion have been signed with Malaysian companies (including SKS); a contract worth USD 115 million with Vietnamese company Petro-Vietnam, along with a contract worth USD 142 million signed with the Croatian company INA. Spanish and Australian companies are also part of this list.

Contracts for gas supplies have been signed with Syria, Switzerland, Sri Lanka, Poland, Ecuador and Oman, although again, no details are provided. Also in the gas exports sector, a new contract worth EUR 2.625 billion was signed with a Chinese company, in March 2009.

Iranian Ayatollah: Iran-US Dialogue “only with nuclear bomb”

The secretary-general of the Iranian Hezbollah, Ayatollah Dr Seyyed Mohammad Baqer Kharazi, has unequivocally admitted his regime’s nuclear plans, saying that there will be no relations with the United States until Tehran has nuclear bombs. According to the Shabestan news agency, he said: “If one is not allowed to have nuclear bombs, one cannot have relations with the United States. And if we are to have relations, then we also need a nuclear bomb.”

www.europeandemocracy.org

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