US lawmakers urge penalties for Chinese company

Two senior senators are urging the Obama administration to punish the Chinese National Petroleum Co. for investing in Iran.

In a letter to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Republican Sen. John Kyl of Arizona and Democratic Sen. Charles Schumer of New York say the Chinese company has violated a new U.S. law aimed at discouraging foreign investment in Iran.

The letter is aimed at prodding the administration to enforce the law generally. It singles out the Chinese company specifically, however, for its agreement last year to invest in Iran’s South Azadegan oil field.

The letter says: “The administration should penalize CNPC, and other Chinese entities, for helping Iran evade international pressure.”