Turkey to seek US waiver on Iran oil, energy official says

US ally gets 30% of its oil from Iran; Turkeys biggest oil importer also buys crude from neighbour
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Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi (L) shakes hands with his Turkish counterpart Ahmet Davutoglu (R) before a meeting in Tehran on Jan 4 (AFP/Getty Images)
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The EU and the US tightened on Jan 4 the sanctions noose around Iran, with diplomats in Brussels saying a preliminary agreement had been reached on an EU embargo of Iranian oil (AFP/Getty Images)
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The West's double squeeze on Iran adds to existing sanctions imposed over Tehran's nuclear programme that is increasingly destabilising the Islamic republic oil-dependent economy (AFP/Getty Images)
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Turkey will seek a waiver from the US to exempt its biggest refiner Tupras from new US sanctions on institutions that deal with Iran's central bank, a Turkish energy ministry official told Reuters (AFP/Getty Images)
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US president Barack Obama signed the new sanctions into law on New Year's Eve, which if implemented fully would prevent most refineries from paying for Iranian crude, the first Western measure that could have serious impact on Iran's oil industry (AFP/Getty Images)
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The law would strip any financial institution dealing with Iran's central bank from access to the US financial system. However, the law allows Obama to issue waivers to firms in countries that significantly reduce dealings with Iran, or at any time when it is either in the US national interest or necessary for energy market stability (AFP/Getty Images)
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U.S. ally Turkey gets about 30% of its oil from neighbour Iran, and Tupras - Turkey's biggest crude oil importer, owned by its largest conglomerate, Koc Holding - is a big buyer of Iranian crude (AFP/Getty Images)