Ramin Mehmanparast

Iran says the recent EU sanctions against the country is part of a policy to divert attention from Europe’s internal crises.

Iranian media report that Ramin Mehmanparast, a spokesman for Iran’s foreign ministry, said that the sanctions “appear to be connected with the internal political and economic crises within the European Union.”

Mehmanparast added: “It is better that European countries attend to the interests of their own people rather than blindly following the policies of other countries and having to pay for the wrong policies of others.”

Yesterday, 27 foreign ministers of EU countries passed a new set of sanctions against Iran, intensifying pressure on the Islamic Republic.

Under the new resolution, the assets of 100 companies including the Hamburg-based EIH Bank are to be frozen.

The resolution also named five more Iranian officials who are banned from holding accounts in EU banks and traveling to EU countries.

The European Union and the United States have been imposing sanctions on Iran, claiming their efforts are aimed at forcing Iran to halt its nuclear activities.

Iran insists its nuclear program is completely peaceful and in no way connected to its military activities.

Most recently, European countries have been refusing to refuel Iranian passenger airliners as part of the sanctions.

Mehmanparast said this practice, recently carried out at Swiss and German airports, is in violation of international aviation regulations. He added that the continuation of the practice may result in foreigner airliners receiving similar treatment in Iran.