EUROPE will agree sanctions banning the purchase of oil from Iran by the end of the month, William Hague, the British foreign secretary, said yesterday as Saudi Arabia promised it could make up the shortfall.
Mr Hague was speaking as part of what appeared to be a concerted effort by the EU to increase pressure on Iran. His German and French counterparts sent the same message in separate interviews, insisting that the Iranian regime was continuing its work on nuclear weapons. They also threatened to block dealings with its central bank.
Israel, the US, the EU and Iran's neighbours are engaged in a complex game of threat and counter-threat with Tehran in the hope of persuading it to back down from its nuclear programme. (© Daily Telegraph, London)