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September 10, 2019 10:27 am

Top Treasury Official: US Will Sanction Buyers of Iranian Oil

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A crew member takes pictures with a mobile phone on Iranian oil tanker Adrian Darya 1, previously named Grace 1, as it sits anchored after the Supreme Court of the British territory lifted its detention order, in the Strait of Gibraltar, Spain, August 18, 2019. Photo: REUTERS/Jon Nazca/File Photo. – The United States will sanction whoever buys Iranian oil, warned the US Treasury Department’s top official for countering terrorist financing.

“We will continue to put pressure on Iran and as [US] President [Donald Trump] said there will be no waivers of any kind for Iran’s oil,” US Treasury Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Sigal Mandelker told reporters on Sunday.

Iranian crude-oil exports were reduced by more than 80 percent because of the Trump administration reimposing sanctions lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal, which the United States exited in May 2018, along with enacting new financial penalties against the Islamic Republic.

On Sunday, Iran stated that its oil tanker Adrian Darya 1, which was impounded by the United Kingdom off Gibraltar in July and released last month despite last-minute efforts by the United States to halt its release, has docked somewhere in the Mediterranean and unloaded the ship’s oil. The United States blacklisted the tanker last month.

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Last week, it was reported that the oil tanker, allegedly owned by the IRGC, carrying around 2.1 million barrels of crude oil worth $130 million, switched off its Automatic Identification System, fueling speculation that it is heading towards Syria, which would violate US sanctions against Iran’s energy sector.

“This is not just about the tanker. It is a sharp warning to any company in the world,” said Mandelker. “Companies and governments understand that between the choice of doing business with Iran or doing business with the US, it’s a no-brainer.”

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