The U.S. designated “the captains of the five ships that U.S.-sanctioned Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) and National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC) used to deliver Iranian gasoline to the illegitimate Maduro regime in Venezuela”. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo asserted that “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… 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”. He went on caution that “mariners who are considering work with Iran and Venezuela should understand that aiding these oppressive regimes is simply not worth the risk. Individuals and entities will face consequences from the U.S. if they do business with the Iranian regime, Maduro or his cronies”. Iran’s diplomatic spokesperson opined that the designations “signal the miserable failure of the so-called ‘maximum pressure’… Iran and Venezuela remain steadfast in countering unlawful American sanctions”.
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