(June 9, 2020 / JNS) The United States is planning to expand sanctions in an effort to stymie oil and fuel trade between Iran and Venezuela, reported The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the matter.
The Trump administration could sanction as many as 50 tankers, according to the report.
Such moves would exemplify the administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign since withdrawing the United States from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, reimposing sanctions under it, along with enacting new penalties against the regime.
Last week, the United States sanctioned four entities and their vessels for partaking in Venezuelan oil trade.
Five Iranian tankers apparently consisting of at least $45.5 million in value of gasoline and similar items have unloaded fuel to Venezuela in recent weeks in defiance of U.S. sanctions. However, those deliveries were “just a ribbon-cutting,” one of the people familiar with the situation told The Wall Street Journal, citing that the deliveries will last the South American country, which, like Iran, has been under tough U.S. sanctions, just a few weeks.
Iran and Venezuela’s leaders have said that such shipments will continue as Venezuelan President Nicolas Máduro announced last week that he would visit Iran soon to sign agreements in energy and other sectors.
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