Iran bans fuel supply to western airlines
After Western governments decided not to provide fuel for Iranian passenger planes, Iran decided to retaliate and an immediate order was issued banning supply of jet fuel to Western airlines flying to and from Tehran, First Vice President Mohammad Reza Rahimi said, Tehran Times reported with reference to the Persian-language newspaper 'Iran'.
"Recently fuel supply for Iranian passenger planes flying to Europe was stopped. Now the question is if they (West) have problems with the Iranian government why do they deprive the people of their rights. Iran decided immediately to strike back and banned supply of fuel to Western passenger planes landing in Iran," he said.
Last week President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad warned countries that refrain from supplying fuel to Iranian planes of the dire consequences of their action, stressing that Iran will take action against such moves, Fars News Agency reported. "Countries that resort to such moves would suffer," he said at a press conference in Tehran.
On March 28, Austrian energy company OMV said it would no longer fuel Iran Air planes at Vienna International Airport.
OMV announced that it didn't renew its contract with the Iranian airline, meaning flights can't refuel with the group in Vienna, United Press International reported.
"To further correspond (to) all applicable regulations we have decided to cancel fueling of Iran Air at Vienna International Airport," a company spokesman told UPI in response to e-mail queries.
Iran has repeatedly stated that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes of providing energy, but many other countries contend that it is seeking to develop nuclear weapons and last June the Security Council imposed a fourth round of sanctions against it, citing the proliferation risks of its nuclear program and its continued failure to cooperate with the IAEA.
Resolutions adopted by the UN Security Council, as well as additional unilateral sanctions approved by the U.S. Congress and the foreign ministers of all EU countries, were primarily directed against the banking, financial and energy sectors of Iran.
Restrictions imposed by the EU include the ban on the sale of equipment, technologies and services to Iran's energy sector; the same measure refers to the refining industry. New investments in Iran's energy sector have also been also prohibited as a whole.
The US State Department last year published a list that named several international energy companies that stopped doing business with Iran and several of those companies canceled contracts with Iran Air.