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New U.S. Sanctions on Iran Target Oil Revenues Feeding Military

The U.S. Department of Treasury has slapped sanctions on an additional 20 entities, including Iranian Sepehr Energy and individuals and companies globally, in connection to the facilitation of finances that support Iran’s military. 

Sepehr is targeted in the newest sanctions package for allegedly serving as a front company for Iranian government oil sales, which the Treasury department says is funding Iran’s “destabilizing regional activities” and supporting “multiple regional proxy groups”, including Hezbollah and Hamas. 

“The IRGC-QF and MODAFL continue to engage in illicit finance schemes to generate funds to fan conflict and spread terror throughout the region,” said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson. “The United States remains committed to exposing elements of the Iranian military and its complicit partners abroad to disrupt this critical source of funds.”While there is still no concrete evidence that Iran was directly or indirectly involved in the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7, the U.S. military has come under constant attack in Syria and Iran from Iran-backed proxy groups since then. Even Israel has been very public about its theory that Iran was not involved in the Hamas attack. Earlier this month, the EU likewise said it was considering a new round of sanctions targeting Iran for its support of Hamas; however, this is a polarizing effort in the bloc. 

The new round of U.S. sanctions comes as Iran ramps up its crude oil output to 3.1 million barrels per day for October, putting it in the third-place ranking among OPEC producers. According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), Iran saw a 50,000-bpd month-on-month increase in production in October. Since the beginning of the year, Iran has increased oil output by more than 500,000 bpd. 

By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com

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  • Mamdouh Salameh on November 29 2023 said:
    Instead of trying to improve relations with Iran, the United States does everything to antagonise It with more sanctions that have proven an utter failure.

    Contrast this with China brokering the resumption of diplomatic relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran thus contributing to stability, prosperity and peace in the Gulf region.

    Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
    International Oil Economist
    Global Energy Expert

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