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UAE Says Iran Sanctions Hurt Business

After cracking down on firms trading with Iran, UAE authorities say they are worried that the newest sanctions against Iran may hurt business interests.

Iran is one of the United Arab Emirate's largest trading partners. UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash says the two countries have billions of dollars in legitimate trade agreements that must be spared.

He said Monday that the government is trying to decide on an approach that will help it sift through the exchanges that do not violate sanctions.

The UAE comments come days after U.S. Undersecretary of the Treasury Stuart Levey made a trip to the UAE to urge tighter enforcement of the sanctions against Iran.

The sanctions are designed to curtail Iran's alleged nuclear weapons program. Iran says its nuclear program is for peaceful use.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.