Montreal Gazette: There is "little choice but to pursue additional sanctions against Iran" to pressure that country to halt its nuclear-enrichment activities, Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon said yesterday. The Montreal Gazette
At G8 meeting. To pressure country to halt nuclear program
By JULIET O'NEILL, Canwest News Service
There is "little choice but to pursue additional sanctions against Iran" to pressure that country to halt its nuclear-enrichment activities, Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon said yesterday.
He said the push for United Nations sanctions against Iran will be a "critical concern" at a meeting Tuesday in Ottawa of the foreign ministers of the Group of Eight industrialized countries.
While saying the G8 will seek a way to "put additional pressure on Iran," he could not say whether the G8 ministers were likely to reach a consensus on the parameters of sanctions – specifically, to what extent they should be aimed at Iran's economy.
The nature of potential penalties is in dispute among the United States, Russia, China and others discussing a potential UN Security Council decision to impose a fourth set of sanctions, tougher than those now in place.
Russian foreign ministry spokesman Andrei Nesterenko, speaking about the G8 agenda in the Novosti news agency, warned against advocating sanctions that would cause "a financial and economic strangulation of the country."
The G8 ministers are set to discuss an array of international security issues, from nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament negotiations to Middle East tensions.
"Iran will be a critical concern," Cannon said. "Its actions raise very serious doubts that its nuclear program is peaceful.
"We will be favouring a dialogue," he said. "We want to see what we can do as members of the G8. … Our preference … is to see the UN Security Council take action."