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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release March 14, 1995


President Clinton announced today his intention to issue shortly an Executive Order that will prohibit U.S. persons from entering into contracts for the financing, or the overall supervision and management, of the development of petroleum resources in Iran.

The President is issuing this order in response to the actions and policies of Iran, including support for international terrorism, efforts to undermine the Middle East peace process, and pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and the means to deliver them. We have worked energetically to press the Government of Iran to cease this unacceptable behavior. To that end we have worked closely with Allied governments to prevent Iran's access to goods which would enhance its military capabilities and allow it to further threaten the security of the region. We have also worked to limit Iran's financial resources by opposing subsidized lending.

To allow U.S. companies to finance or manage the development of Iran's hydrocarbon resources would contribute to Iran's productive capacity and its economic and financial strength. We think it is important to stop American participation in these kinds of activities. We need to send a clear and unequivocal message to Iran: there cannot be normal relations until Iran's unacceptable behavior changes.

The Administration has worked cooperatively with the senior executives of Conoco Inc., which is the company most directly affected by this Executive order. The President appreciates the willingness of Conoco to work with us on this important issue.

The Administration will also continue to review other economic measures with respect to Iran.

We will inform our allies of this decision and seek their cooperation. We call on other nations to take similar steps so that we are united in sending a clear and unequivocal signal to Iran.

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