The United States expressed extreme disappointment Wednesday over Britain's refusal to make its economic sanctions against Iran retroactive to Nov. 4, the day Americans were taken hostage in Tehran. US officials viewed the British move as a backing off from steps that Britain and the eight other Common Market countries agreed to last week in Naples. Under the agreement, the European countries were to block all exports except food and medicine under contracts signed with Iran since Nov. 4.
Meanwhile, France and Western Germany decided to ban exports of goods to Iran under contracts reached after Nov. 4. The ban excluded food and medical supplies.