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US publicizes new sanctions focusing on Iranian oil trade

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Sanctions have been imposed on the Iranian Ministry of Petroleum, the Nationwide Iranian Oil Firm and the Nationwide Iranian Tanker Firm.

The USA Treasury Division introduced new sanctions in opposition to the Iranian oil trade Monday as a part of the Trump administration’s rising financial stress on Iran.

Sanctions have been imposed on the Iranian Ministry of Petroleum, the Nationwide Iranian Oil Firm and the Nationwide Iranian Tanker Firm “for his or her monetary help to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps – Quds Power,” the Treasury Division mentioned in an announcement. The Quds Power is an elite unit that’s a part of the 125,000-strong IRGC, a paramilitary organisation that solutions solely to Iran’s Supreme Chief Ali Hosseini Khamenei.

“The regime in Iran makes use of the petroleum sector to fund the destabilizing actions of the IRGC – QF,” US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin mentioned in an announcement saying the sanctions Monday.

The minister of petroleum was additionally blacklisted alongside different people and entities, and the sanctions serve to freeze any US property they’ve and usually bar Individuals from coping with them.

In response to the sanctions, Iran’s oil minister wrote on Twitter on Monday that Tehran’s oil trade won’t yield to stress from the US.

Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh mentioned US sanctions in opposition to him and his colleagues “are a passive response to Washington’s failure to chop Tehran’s oil exports to zero”.

“The period of unilateralism is over on the earth. Iran’s oil trade won’t be hamstrung,” Zanganeh added.

The motion imposes counterterrorism sanctions on NIOC, the Nationwide Iranian Tanker Firm and Nationwide Petrochemical Firm, which had beforehand been blacklisted by the US beneath totally different authorities.

Tensions between Washington and Tehran have soared since President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew in 2018 from the Iran nuclear deal struck by President Barack Obama and commenced reimposing US sanctions that had been eased beneath the accord.

Iranian oil exports rose sharply in September in defiance of US sanctions, in line with three assessments based mostly on tanker monitoring, throwing a lifeline to Iran and its collapsing economic system.

Exports have shrunk from greater than 2.5 million barrels per day because the US withdrew from the nuclear deal. Nonetheless, Iran has been working to get across the measures and preserve exports flowing.

“The few remaining patrons of Iranian crude oil ought to know that they’re serving to to fund Iran’s malign exercise throughout the Center East, together with its help for terrorism,” US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo mentioned in a separate assertion.

The Treasury additionally imposed sanctions on Mahmoud Madanipour and United Arab Emirates-based Mobin Worldwide Restricted, accusing them of getting into into an settlement with Venezuelan state-owned Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) to ship petrol obtained from NIOC to the federal government of embattled Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.

The British-based firms Madanipour, Mobin Holding Restricted and Oman Gasoline Buying and selling Ltd had been additionally blacklisted.

Mobin Worldwide and Oman Gasoline have mentioned they had been the homeowners of the cargo on board a number of tankers confiscated by US authorities in August.

The US Justice Division mentioned the cargo was destined for Venezuela, whose oil trade can also be beneath US sanctions, however the firms denied in court docket filings that Venezuela was the vacation spot.

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