The Donald Trump government warned foreign governments, ports, shipping companies and insurers They could face severe sanctions if they help Iran’s fleet of tankers carry fuel to Venezuela, Elliott Abrams told Reuters on Friday, seeking to avoid further shipments.
The US special representative for Venezuela pointed out that the pressure campaign is being waged “for making sure everyone recognizes that helping would be a very dangerous transaction. ”
Four Iranian oil tankers arrived in Venezuelan waters to deliver fuel, while another is on the way, in a sign of deepening ties between Iran and Venezuela, OPEC countries that have strained relations with the United States.
“We have alerted the shipping community around the world, ship owners, ship captains, ship insurers, and we have alerted ports on the way between Iran and Venezuela”Abrams said in an interview, adding that diplomatic warnings have been sent privately to governments “around the world.”
A person familiar with the matter said one of them was Gibraltar, located on the oil tanker route. A US official reported that several countries had been asked to deny port services.
“I don’t think they will find ship owners, insurers, captains and crews willing to participate in these transactions in the future.”Abrams argued.
The official predicted that the fuel would only last for a few weeks and would mostly be diverted toward loyalists to Nicolás Maduro. The shortage has been exacerbated by US sanctions against the Chavista regime, under whose government an economic collapse has occurred.
The Iranian regime sent ships loaded with 245 million liters of gasoline, some of which have already reached the Venezuelan coast. However, Washington managed to interrupt the arrival of two of them, threatening sanctions against the carriers, US authorities confirmed this Friday to the newspaper Wall street journal.
Two Liberian-flagged and Greek-owned vessels, laden with Iranian petroleum products bound for Venezuela, halted their deliveries after the threat of sanctions, US authorities confirmed to the aforementioned newspaper.
The two tankers – the Bering and the Bella – were expected to arrive in Venezuela after four other Iranian gasoline-carrying ships arrived in the country, the most recent on Wednesday. Another Iranian-owned oil tanker is also heading to Venezuela.
The Venezuelan regime of Nicolás Maduro and the Islamic Republic, both targets of US sanctions, described the oil shipments as “a blow to the Trump administration.”
With information from Reuters
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