Iran considers oil lane closure

July 9, 2012 at 8:41 AM

TEHRAN, July 9 (UPI) -- Iranian lawmakers plan to hear from military officials on the possibility of choking off oil transit lanes through the Strait of Hormuz, a lawmaker said.

Last week, Iranian lawmakers put forward a draft measure aimed at blocking oil tanker traffic through the Strait of Hormuz for countries that have enacted sanctions against Iran.

The proposal was seen as a response to U.S. and European sanctions that target Iran's energy sector. Sanctions were meant as punishment for Iran's controversial nuclear program, which Tehran maintains is peaceful.

Mehdi Moussavinejad, one of the lawmakers who helped write the legislation, said national security officials were called to testify about the potential action.

"The Parliament should take an all-around and insightful decision on the Strait of Hormuz and defend the rights of the Iranian nation without any reservations," he was quoted by the semiofficial Fars News Agency as saying.

Roughly 20 percent of the oil traded on global markets passed through the Strait of Hormuz last year.

Iranian lawmakers vote in the measure at the end of the month.

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