US slaps new sanctions against Asian firms
WASHINGTON: The United States has slapped new sanctions against seven Chinese companies as well as two firms from Taiwan and North Korea, charging they may have helped Iran in its quest for weapons of mass destruction and more modern ballistic missiles.
A State Department notice published in the latest issue of the Federal Register said the nine conglomerates are being penalised for transferring to Iran “equipment and technology controlled under multilateral export control lists”.
No specifics have been provided, but the action comes amid increased concerns the administration of President George W Bush may be toughening its stance towards Iran. The companies now barred from doing business with the United States include Beijing Alite Technologies Limited, China Aero-Technology Import Export Corporation, China Great Wall Industry Corporation, China North Industry Corporation (Norinco), QC Chen, Wha Cheong Tai Company, and Zibo Chemet Equipment Corporation. afp