European Union ambassadors have agreed to slap an embargo on Iran's oil exports. The decision will go into effect after receiving formal approval from the EU's foreign ministers.

The move is a last ditch attempt to punish Iran for its ongoing attempt to arm itself with nuclear weapons, and to dissuade it from going all the way with its program.

News agencies quoted an unnamed diplomat in Brussels as saying that "The principal agreement on the ban for the Iranian oil imports was reached."

According to RT, sources in Brussels reported that the sanctions would introduce a gradual ban on buying Iranian oil and petrochemicals, and that EU members would have to halt imports completely by July 1, 2012.

Foreign ministers of the 27 EU member states are meeting in Brussels on Monday to further discuss the sanctions.

The U.S. said Sunday that aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln, as well as a British Royal Navy frigate and a French warship, have passed through the Strait of Hormuz at the entrance to the Gulf without incident in the wake of Iranian threats to block the trade route.