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EU expected to approve new sanctions on Iran

EU Leaders Meet

FILE: European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso talks with Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron while Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel (2ndR) speaks with European Council President Herman Van Rompuy (C) at a European Union summit in Brussels. (rEUTERS)

Britain, Germany and France say they expect the European Union to approve even tougher sanctions on Iran to prevent it from developing nuclear weapons.

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said ahead of Monday's meeting of EU foreign ministers that new sanctions would be `'a sign of our resolve in the European Union that we will step up the pressure."

Hague said such pressure would continue to mount `'over the coming months unless negotiations succeed. We remain open of course to success of negotiations."

The foreign ministers of France and Germany made similar calls. They did not elaborate on the kind of measures under consideration.

The United States and its allies accuse Iran of covertly developing nuclear weapons. Tehran denies that.