“Europe has sent an important message placing global security ahead of economic interests” says Moshe Kantor, ECTR and EJC President

Dr. Moshe Kantor, President of the International Luxembourg Forum on Preventing Nuclear Catastrophe and the European Jewish Congress and, has commended the decision by European governments to agree to a ban on the import of Iranian oil.

“Europe has sent an extremely important message that long-term global security should not be compromised for short-term economic interests” Kantor said.

The President of the Luxembourg Forum, an international non-governmental organisation uniting leading world-renowned experts on non-proliferation of nuclear weapons, has long called on Europe to ratchet up sanctions, even if it means an immediate economic price.

“Although we will see a rise in oil prices in the near future, it is nothing in comparison to how a nuclear-armed Iran will be able to dictate oil prices for the foreseeable future, especially given their attempted control of vital oil shipping lines” Kantor said. “Security considerations have to take precedence, and a more stable region will ultimately lead to more stable oil prices.”

Kantor also pointed out that this decision also has moral implications.

“Europe is sending an additional message to Iran that it can not continue behaving in a bellicose manner and expect that its treatment in the international community will remain the same” Kantor said. “Iran is threatening and blackmailing the international community, so now, more than ever, this decision by the Europeans will hopefully be seen in Tehran as reaction to their sabre-rattling.”

While the agreement has yet to be implemented and no decision has been made as to its starting point, Europe’s decision is an important element in a Western effort to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. This effort was boosted on New Year’s Eve when President Obama signed tough new financial measures against Iran into law.

“It is our firm belief that if strong international measures are taken against Iran’s oil industry and central bank, this will have a major effect on the Iranian administration’s ability to function normally.” Kantor said.

“We call on immediate implementation of the decision and hope other countries in the international community will join Europe and the U.S. in similar measures to ensure that Iran is not able to exploit gaps in the sanctions regime.”

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