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Iran: New EU sanctions 'unconstructive'

By the CNN Wire Staff
A security guard stands outside an Iranian nuclear reactor site in Bushehr in 2009.
A security guard stands outside an Iranian nuclear reactor site in Bushehr in 2009.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • U.S. and Canada welcome the sanctions; Russia condemns them
  • Iran calls new EU sanctions "ineffective and unconstructive"
  • The sanctions are a "hostile move against Iran," a spokesman says

Tehran, Iran (CNN) -- Iran was defiant Tuesday after the European Union approved new sanctions against the country, saying the measures are "ineffective and unconstructive."

The sanctions are "punitive measures" and "a hostile move against Iran," said Ramin Mehman-Parast, a spokesman for Iran's Foreign Affairs Ministry.

"These sanctions neither assist the process of negotiations, nor are able to impose any harm in the will of the Iranian nation for materializing their natural rights regarding their peaceful nuclear program," he told the state-run news agency, IRNA.

The European Union imposed new measures on Monday that restrict trade related to Iran's nuclear program and its military. The sanctions limit financial assistance and funding and allow EU members to inspect all cargo going to or from Iran.

Video: EU targets Iran with sanctions
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"The path of imposing sanctions is an old, already tried, incompetent path with reverse effects," Mehman-Parast said.

He said the sanctions went against efforts Iran has made to build trust with the European Union.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper welcomed the sanctions, but Russia condemned them, saying they will undermine efforts to settle the issue of Iran's nuclear program.