Europe Widens Iran Sanctions

BRUSSELS — European Union leaders authorized Thursday a significant widening of the 27-nation bloc’s sanctions against Iran because of concerns over Tehran’s nuclear-weapons program, in a move that will reinforce a slow but steady trend toward declining economic relations between Europe and Iran.

The new European measures aim explicitly for the first time at parts of the economy unconnected to Tehran’s nuclear program and go well beyond curbs agreed in a more narrowly focused United Nations sanctions resolution this month. Pressure from the U.S., a much more important market than Iran, has already persuaded a growing band of big firms to curb business ties with the country.

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