Ex-HP CEO, a Senate hopeful, defends sales in Iran

WASHINGTON (JTA) – A former CEO at Hewlett Packard running for the U.S. Senate defended the company’s sales in Iran.

Carly Fiorina, the Republican nominee in California, confirmed that HP sold printer ink in Iran but said that it was in full compliance with sanctions laws, according to the Israeli business publication Globes’ monthly magazine, Lady Globes. Fiorina served as CEO of HP from 1995 to 2005.

Fiorina said that just as Dell sells PCs in Iran and Apple sells iPhones, HP sold ink while she was CEO, Lady Globes reported. It is good that such technology reaches Iran, she added, because atrocities committed by the government can be publicized.

“I think in addition to crippling sanctions on the regime, we should be encouraging elements of political reform inside Iran, and one of the ways to do that is by selling communication in and out,” Fiorina told the magazine.

In the same interview, the Senate candidate said it is important that the president act quickly to enforce the new sanctions against Iran. She said the sanctions were important to help protect Israel, and that Israel had the right to protect itself, but it is not Israel’s job to act if all else fails.

On Jewish West Bank settlements, Fiorina told the magazine that there had been no response so far to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s invitation to direct talks.

“[Netanyahu] called on Mahmoud Abbas to be willing to sit and talk without preconditions,” she said, “but there doesn’t seem to be someone on the other side willing to sit down.”
 

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