U.K. court orders government to lift sanctions against Iranian bank
The U.K. Supreme Court has ordered the British government to lift the sanctions against Tehran-based Bank Mellat whose British assets had been frozen for allegedly financing Iran’s controversial nuclear programme.
The bank, one of Iran’s largest private banks, had been fighting to have the sanctions lifted since 2009, denying any links with the nuclear programme.
The court made a strong ruling by calling the singling out Bank Mellat was irrational and disproportionate. The court held that the bank was not served with any notice of the Treasury’s intention to make the direction, and therefore had given no opportunity to make representations which was against public law.
The Treasury was disappointed and might appeal. The bank’s assets would remain frozen pending an appeal.