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U.S. official consults China over sanctions on Iran.

BEIJING, Nov. 14 Kyodo

A senior U.S. official underscored in China this week the importance of preventing financial entities from supporting Iran's illicit activities, the U.S. Embassy in Beijing said Wednesday, as Beijing repeated its opposition against the use of sanctions.

U.S. Treasury Undersecretary Stuart Levey's three-day visit to the Chinese capital from Monday came after Washington unveiled new sanctions against Iran, including the designation of its Revolutionary Guard Corps as a proliferator of weapons.

''While here, Under Secretary Levey consulted with Chinese government officials and financial institutions on the importance of protecting the international financial system from being misused by Iran to support its illicit activities,'' the embassy said in a statement.

Levey ''also shared information on actions recently taken by the United States against entities and individuals supporting Iran's proliferation and terrorism activities,'' the statement said.

The talks were ''serious and constructive,'' it added.

China, which has opposed implementing sanctions to solve concerns about Iran, repeated that position Tuesday.

Issues over Iran should be solved ''through dialogue,'' Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao said at a press conference.

''Carrying out sanctions, particularly unilateral sanctions, we believe, is not helpful'' to solve problems, Liu said, while adding he did not have details of Levey's meetings with Chinese officials.

In late October, the United States said it was designating the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps as a target for sanctions, and also named the country's elite Quds Force as a supporter of terrorism.

Additionally, it designated three of Iran's largest banks -- Bank Melli, Bank Mellat and Bank Sederat -- as targets for its sanctions for engaging in proliferation activities.
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Publication:Asian Political News
Date:Nov 17, 2007
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