The US Department of Treasury announced on Monday that it has placed the names of new companies on the sanctions list due to their ties to Iran.
It was on this Monday that The Treasury Department of the United States announced the imposition of a new series of sanctions against Iran’s oil industry. The sanctions are meant to target a number of foreign companies and individuals that Washington believes have been helping Iran sell tens of millions of dollars’ worth of oil.
The new sanctions hit a total of six companies including four companies from Hong Kong, one from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and one from Singapore, according to the Treasury website. They were accused of assisting Iran’s Persian Gulf Petrochemical Industry Commercial Co. to sell Iranian petroleum and petrochemical products from Iran to East Asia.
The U.S. Treasury and the U.S. State Departments imposed sanctions on a total of six companies, four based in Hong Kong, one in Singapore, and one in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in actions that were announced in separate statements.
Surprisingly enough, it was minutes after introducing these new sanctions that the US Treasury claimed Washington is committed to diplomacy with Iran to resolve the nuclear conflict.
“The United States continues to pursue the path of diplomacy to achieve a mutual return to full implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action,” the Treasury’s Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, Brian Nelson, said in the statement, also noting that “until such time as Iran is ready to return to full implementation of its commitments, we will continue to enforce sanctions on the illicit sale of Iranian petroleum and petrochemicals.”
Iran’s reaction to the new US sanctions
In response to the new unilateral US sanctions against Iran’s oil sale, Naser Kanani, the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said on Tuesday morning that “officials of the Biden administration have repeatedly called Trump’s policy of maximum pressure a failed policy, yet in practice, they have continued and even expanded Trump’s fruitless approach to the extent that even in the process of current efforts to resume negotiations in order to return to the JCPOA, Washington has not stopped their destructive actions.”
Kanani also warned the US of Iran’s retaliation, saying that “first of all, the Islamic Republic of Iran will show a decisive, firm and immediate reaction against the White House’s insistence on the continuation of sanctions, and secondly, all necessary measures to neutralize the possible negative impacts of such sanctions on the country’s trade and economy will be effectively taken into action as soon as possible.”
He also clarified that these sanctions have clearly revealed “the fraudulent nature of the US policies towards Iran at the same time as the Iranian people are suffering a lot from financial losses as a result of the recent floods across the country.”
From words to action
A day after the US imposition of the new sanctions, the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) announced that it has injecting gas into new centrifuges. The AEOI spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi said in an interview with Iran’s state media this Tuesday that the order to inject gas to hundreds of new centrifuge machines, including IR1 and IR6 advanced machines, was issued on Monday evening.
He also added that the move “is in line with the implementation of the Law on Strategic Action on Removing Sanctions and Safeguarding the Interests of the Iranian nation,” and that “the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has already been informed of the measure.”