Iran’s state oil company NIOC platform. (Photo credit: SHANA / Hassan Hoseini).
According to Al-Arabiya news, the US Treasury Department has announced the imposition of sanctions against 13 companies from various countries accused of facilitating the sale of Iranian petrochemicals and petroleum products to buyers in East Asia.
Companies based in China, the United Arab Emirates, and Hong Kong, were added to the “blacklist” on 17 November after being accused of facilitating the sale of hundreds of millions of dollars of Iranian petrochemicals and oil products to buyers in East Asia, including the National Iranian Oil Company and Triliance Petrochemical Co. Ltd. already under sanctions.
According to Reuters, “Washington has increasingly targeted Chinese companies over the export of Iran’s petrochemicals as the prospects of reviving the nuclear pact have dimmed. Indirect talks on the accord, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), have broken down.”
“Today’s action further demonstrates the complex sanctions evasion methods Iran employs to sell petroleum and petrochemical products illicitly,” the Treasury’s Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, Brian Nelson, said in the statement reported by Al-Arabiya news.
“The United States will continue to implement sanctions against those actors facilitating these sales,” he added.
On the other hand, Iran has rejected US sanctions against their national companies and government officials on multiple occasions.
On 15 September, Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the US for placing sanctions on several Iranian nationals and firms after accusing them of being complicit in cyber attacks against Washington and its allies.
Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Nasser Kanaani remarked that the allegations against Tehran were part of a campaign to spread “propaganda and disinformation.”
“Washington’s insistence on resorting to foolish, unlawful, and norm-defying behaviors against independent governments and nations is indicative of the American statesmen’s inability to clearly understand global equations and adapt themselves to the existing facts,” Kanaani added. At the same time, he continues to highlight the hypocrisy of the US government, which has, directly and indirectly, supported sabotage attacks against Iran by Israel and other anti-Iran groups.
Meanwhile, European Union member states approved on 14 November a new round of sanctions against 29 individuals and three entities for the internal repression in Iran following the death of Mahsa Amini in police custody, the Czech Presidency of the Council of the European Union confirmed, according to Al-Arabiya news.