Today, Senator Joe Lieberman (I-CT) released the following statement on the Iran Sanctions exemption for China:
"I am deeply disappointed by the Obama Administration's decision to issue an exemption to China for its purchases of Iranian oil. While Chinese purchases of Iranian oil decreased earlier this year during a commercial pricing dispute between China and Iran, Iranian oil shipments to China are once again rising -- providing the Iranian regime with relief, as it continues to move forward with its illicit nuclear activities and spurn meaningful negotiations. China's conduct stands in contrast with the European Union and South Korea, which are completely ending their purchases of Iranian crude. China should pledge to do so too.
"The exemption that China has just been granted is up for review in six months. Before then, Congress needs to more clearly define what countries must do to earn an exemption. The current law simply says they must "significantly reduce" their purchases of Iranian oil. I hope we will use the sanctions bill currently pending before a House-Senate conference committee to clarify the meaning of "significant reduction.'"