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Congress rebuffs easing of Iran sanctions

7:08 AM, Dec 9, 2011   |    comments
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WASHINGTON (AP) - Republicans and Democrats determined to look tough on Iran and pro-Israel are rebuffing Obama administration pleas to ease proposed sanctions on Iran's Central Bank.

The administration is seeking flexibility in imposing the penalties. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner says they can have the reverse effect -- drive up oil prices, make money for Iran and help finance its pursuit of a nuclear weapon. Lawmakers argue that the restrictions are imperative with recent reports of Iran's
nuclear work.

At issue is a provision in the Senate defense bill targeting foreign banks that do business with Iran's Central Bank. House and Senate negotiators are working on a final version of the bill and hope to complete it next week.

The Associated Press

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