Turkey rebuffs U.S. pressure against Iranian bank

April 30, 2011 - 0:0

TEHRAN - Ankara has refused U.S. request for limiting activities of Iranian Mellat Bank branches in Turkey, IRNA quoted a BBC Persian service report on Thursday.

U.S. has tried hard to narrow Iran financial transactions in recent years for pressuring Tehran not follow its peaceful nuclear program.
U.S. deputy treasury secretary traveled to Ankara last week and held talks with Turkish officials to persuade Turkey limit Mellat Bank activities in Turkey.
Washington claims that the bank’s branches in Turkey involve in illicit activities. Washington wanted from Turkish banks to refrain from doing business with any Iranian banks which U.S. claims they are “suspected of proliferation activities”. Mellat Bank has now three branches in the country located in Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir.
In response to U.S. pressures, Turkey has said that Mellat Bank isn’t in the list of Iranian banks sanctioned by the United Nations, and Ankara repeatedly declared that has no obligation to following unilateral sanctions of U.S. and EU against Iran, IRNA reported.
“By the fact that it’s not the first time U.S. asks such requests and moreover Turkey emphasized it is impossible to cut trade relations with Iran, a neighbor which is one of the Turkey’s gas suppliers, it doesn’t seem that Turkey would accept the Washington request”, the report further said