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Canadian bank drops Iranian customers

July 12, 2012 at 9:50 AM

TORONTO, July 12 (UPI) -- A major Canadian bank is telling Iranian-Canadian customers to find another bank due to federal economic sanctions against the regime in Tehran.

Lawyer Kaveh Shahrooz, vice-chairman of the Iranian Canadian Congress, told the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. it appeared TD Canada Trust was the only one of the major five banks shedding Iranian customers.

"I have every hope and faith that [TD is] not really out to harm anyone, they're just overzealously applying these sanctions," he said. "We're also going to be reaching out to policymakers, explaining to them the effect that this action is having."

In a letter, TD cited the federal Special Economic Measures (Iran) Regulations as the reason for closing accounts.

"A recent review has identified you as a person TD is restricted from providing financial services to, from, or for the benefit of under these new regulations," the letter said. "As a result, we are informing you that TD will no longer continue to support your current accounts and/or services."

The bank letter said appeals could be made on an individual basis to the Department of Foreign Affairs in Ottawa.

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