March 20th, 2012
05:54 PM ET

11 countries exempted from Iran sanctions

By Adam Levine

Eleven countries, including Japan and European nations, have significantly reduced their Iran oil purchases and should not be subject to new U.S. sanctions, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Congress Tuesday.

The countries are Japan, Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and the United Kingdom, according to a State Department statement."The actions taken by these countries were not easy. They had to rethink their energy needs at a critical time for the world economy and quickly begin to find alternatives to Iranian oil, which many had been reliant on for their energy needs," said Clinton in the State Department statement.

"Only two months after the passage of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2012, we have made progress in shrinking Iran's oil export markets, and isolating its Central Bank from the world financial system. The United States is leading an unprecedented international coalition of partners that has brought to bear significant pressure on the Iranian regime to change its course."

There are 12 other countries purchasing oil from Iran that could face sanctions. A State Department official who briefed reporters on the announcement would not list the countries, but major importers of Iranian oil include China, India and South Korea.

Those countries could look at Japan as an example of how to ween off Iranian oil, said the State Department official. Japan has reduced its oil purchases from Iran by 15% to 22% in the last half of 2011, the official said.

The president needs to make a final decision by March 30 as to whether those other countries have or have not met the requirements to significantly reduce Iran oil purchases. If the president determines any countries have not, the countries' banks will face sanctions starting at the end of June.

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Filed under: China • EU • Europe • Hillary Clinton • India • Iran • Japan • Obama • Sanctions • Secretary of State • South Korea
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  8. WHAT?

    Those countries could look at Japan as an example of how to ween off Iranian oil, said the State Department official. Japan has reduced its oil purchases from Iran by 15% to 22% in the last half of 2011, the official said.

    so Japan has gone from 37% to 22% or is it between 15% and 22%?

    March 30, 2012 at 6:53 pm | Reply
  9. ray gibbs

    Applause 11 countries lessening or no oil Iran. Please: "12 other countries purchasing oil from Iran". Many thanks your strategic, informative, direct article.

    March 21, 2012 at 11:12 am | Reply
  10. Dildo Baggins

    "If" the US were to put sanctions on China, it would be interesting to see their reaction.Personally, I dont think China would stand for it and may retaliate. I just dont understand why we have to be the bully...? Like all great empires at some point they fall and if we continue to try and control the world are day may come sooner then later. Of course I dont want that and I love my country, but are government is playing with to much fire.

    March 21, 2012 at 5:53 am | Reply
    • Peace Keeper

      The United states of America Has the Biggest, Strongest, most desicated military. Every Country does not have the right to develop nuclear weapons. If every country was nuclear the world would have already ended. What part of this don't you people understand? You all cry peace but when there is peace two of our most glorious scyscrapers get destroyed along with thousands of people. There is no winning there is only maintaining. The day someone develops an alternate source of energy that is more sufficiant than oil, thats a different story. Iran must prove to a WORLDWIDE agency that they do not intend to develop nuclear weapons. It is not just the U.S. Love your Country, raise your children, be a good person and let the experts settle the problem in the most peaceful way they can.

      March 21, 2012 at 7:24 am | Reply
      • sheila

        Your idiotic patriotism has blinded your judgement. There are no nuclear weapons wanted by Iran. Go start another war for the sake of the Zionists. Bomb Syria and Hezbollah while you at it... This war will be the Americas last attempt to maintain itself as a super day all Americans will pay for these day you will not be able to hide and protect your criminal soldiers after they kill innocent women and children...that day is coming soon...wait and watch...what you have done to millions of people in afghanistan/iraq/pakistan will happen to repeat itself in your backyard...

        March 21, 2012 at 9:20 am |
      • Peace Keeper


        god have mercy on your soul. How are you so sure iran is not trying to develop nuclear weapons? You have no F*cking idea. I will support my country until my last dying breath. Who do you think you are saying america will pay? We will be punished. Go back to the shithole country you came from BITCH!

        March 22, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
      • lover

        Peace Keeper, I agree with you. U.S. should not receive more people from middle east avoiding to be like France. Other countries just try to gain for their benefit while we have to patrol the whole world. The happy guys are quiet but the unhappy ones are whining all times!

        March 31, 2012 at 12:11 am |
  11. Ekram

    This is what America comes down to now! Bullying and threatening other countries to stop buying Iranian oil......This is what a powerful, fair-minded and democratic country does to their friends? Bully them into submission? "If you are not with us then you are with Iranian oil" tactic has started again. America is now acting like a spent power like many powers before her.....they came and gone and this will happen soon to america if she does not stop tramping and violating other country;s rights and independance to do business to whom they choose to do. We preach fair and free trade but then change rules when they don't suit or conforms to our likings. Stop supporting Israel blindly.......this blind support would destroy you! Behave responsibly and kindly towards other weaker countries. America is still a good country so don't giver her a bad name.

    March 21, 2012 at 3:17 am | Reply

    MRS CLINTON is working very hard on the world stage while the home office is out taking polls about re election.

    NOTICE the above listed countries are now recieving oil from russia , so if there was a speed bump with russia oil in euope, the prices would sky rocket over night .

    THIS OIL THING IS HUGE , CANADA has tons of the stuff , but euope for some reason says it does not like canadian oil , WOW GO FIGURE ???
    i guess i am missing something because this does not make sence to me !

    March 21, 2012 at 2:36 am | Reply
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      July 1, 2012 at 3:49 am | Reply
  13. ray

    US lost this already. There is no way US will ever win against Iran.

    March 21, 2012 at 2:07 am | Reply
    • lloyd8

      AHAHA.. OK. Schmuck. You do not have the slightest clue about what you are saying

      March 21, 2012 at 1:18 pm | Reply
  14. ram

    This is the big bump that will scatter the players. each one looking out for his own country.

    March 20, 2012 at 11:24 pm | Reply
    • lloyd8

      not saying you are wrong.. but I dont understand what you are implying.. Ever heard of the social contract? Everyone always takes care of their own.. its normal

      March 21, 2012 at 1:20 pm | Reply
  15. Spelunker4Plato

    The U.S. has lost its own nukes to the extent that the U.S. government is greatest threat to the U.S.

    March 20, 2012 at 11:24 pm | Reply
  16. AlexShch

    Interesting... How much it has to be to qualify for "significant". Is 10% enough? 5%? Or what?

    Suppose China (the largest oil consumer from Iran) reduces its oil purchases by 5%. Does it qualify to be significant, or China has to face the US sanctions? ...and, how US sunctions are supposed to work against China, given that China is the largest foreign creditor of US.

    Russia is presumably exempt because it is already covered by the blanked regime of US sanctions due to Jackson-Vanik Act of 1972. may be Russia should start buying oil from Iran?

    March 20, 2012 at 10:18 pm | Reply
  17. the wise

    Israel is the threat to peace, not Iran.

    March 20, 2012 at 7:00 pm | Reply
    • Dildo Baggins

      What are you some Nazi cult leader? Give it a rest man we know you hate Israel you make it apparent on every post.

      March 21, 2012 at 5:59 am | Reply
    • Marissa

      The only threats to anybody in this world is Al Aqaeda and the fear of Iran creating nuclear warfare. Those are the ones creating violence and we have to defend our countries to prevent more violence in the near future.

      March 21, 2012 at 1:48 pm | Reply
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      March 21, 2012 at 6:01 am | Reply
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        March 21, 2012 at 4:42 pm |

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