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Iran: U.S. Must Assure European Banks Trade Is Allowed


Polish Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski (right) talks with Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif on May 29 in Warsaw.

Iran is calling on the United States to do more to assure European banks that they can do business with Iran.

"It seems that there is a psychological barrier," Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in Finland’s capital, Helsinki, on May 31. "Some European countries, even European banks, continue to be concerned about retribution by the United States.”

Crippling economic sanctions against Iran were lifted in January as part of last year's nuclear agreement between Tehran and world powers, under which the Islamic republic curbed its nuclear program.

But Iran is struggling to access financing from abroad, as many banks fear breaking the remaining U.S. restrictions.

Meeting with European banking representatives in London earlier this month, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said non-U.S. banks won’t be penalized for conducting legitimate business with Iran.

Zarif, who was in Poland on May 29-30, also plans to travel to Sweden and Latvia as part of his European tour.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AP