Iranians shop at Tehran’s ancient Grand Bazaar. AFP / ATTA KENARE
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Cargill, Bunge and other global traders have halted food supply deals with Iran because new U.S. sanctions have paralyzed banking systems required to secure payments, industry and Iranian government sources say. Food, medicine and other humanitarian supplies are exempt from sanctions Washington reimposed this year after U.S. President Donald Trump said in May he was walking away from a 2015 international deal over Iran's nuclear program.But the U.S. measures targeting everything from oil sales to shipping and financial activities have deterred many foreign banks from all Iranian business, including humanitarian deals. Many smaller banks that had dealt with Iran under a previous round of sanctions have also stopped dealings this time.Swiss lender Banque de Commerce et de Placements, one of those banks that had been involved in humanitarian-related dealings in the past, said in May it was suspending all new business with Iran.Austria's Oberbank, one of the first European banks to reach a deal on new business with Iran, said in June it was stopping.
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