The United States sanctioned five Iranian captains on Wednesday for delivering oil to Venezuela.
Ali Danaei Kenarsari, Mohsen Gohardehi, Alireza Rahnavard, Reza Vaziri and Hamidreza Yahya Zadeh have been accused of delivering gasoline to Venezuela in defiance of U.S. sanctions.
These individuals who headed five Iranian-flagged tankers: CLAVEL, PETUNIA, FORTUNE, FOREST and FAXON—the first three operating under Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) and the rest under National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC). IRISL and NITC have already been sanctioned by the United States.
“The rogue regimes in Caracas and Tehran are unified by their penchant for repressing their people, corruption, self-enrichment and gross mismanagement of their peoples’ wealth,” said U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a statement. “The [Nicolás] Maduro regime has mismanaged Venezuela’s abundant natural resources to the point that it must import gasoline from Iran, and Maduro’s claims of equal and fair gasoline distribution are fooling no one.”
“Iran’s continued support to Venezuela is yet another instance of Iran wasting its people’s resources on ill-conceived foreign adventurism that prolongs suffering abroad,” continued Pompeo. “The only solution to Venezuela’s problems is a democratic transition that restores freedom and prosperity.”
The five tankers, which Iran set sail in May, have carried more than 1.5 million barrels of gasoline and gasoline components to Venezuela.
Wednesday’s development exemplified 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.
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