Oil prices rose on Monday after the European Union agreed to slap an embargo against Iran\'s crude exports, in a move aimed at stopping the key oil producer from funding its disputed nuclear programme. Brent North Sea crude for delivery in March climbed 56 cents to $110.42 a barrel in early London deals. New York\'s main contract, West Texas Intermediate crude for March, edged up five cents to $98.38 a barrel. Following morning talks in Brussels between ambassadors of the 27 EU nations, a diplomat speaking on condition of anonymity said: \"There is a political agreement on an oil embargo.\" The deal is to be formally approved by EU foreign ministers meeting and comes as the United States and allied nations accuse Iran of developing an atomic bomb. Tehran insists its nuclear programme is exclusively for peaceful, civilian use. The embargo meanwhile provides for an immediate ban on importing Iranian crude and a gradual phase-out of existing contracts between now and July 1. Greece\'s dependence on Iranian oil had been holding up an accord on the timing and conditions of the embargo as the financially strapped nation relies on Iran for more than a third of its crude. Iran sells around 20 percent of its crude to EU nations, with Greece, Spain and Italy the top buyers.