Biden admin, citing Trump-era injunction, takes action against companies backing Iranian petrochemical company

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The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Finance announced on Monday that they are taking action against companies that they say helped an Iranian petrochemical company sell their products, generating significant revenues for Tehran.

A statement from Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced that the State Department appointed Pioneer Ship management PTE LTD to manage a ship used to transport Iranian petroleum products, as well as Golden Warrior Shipping Co. Ltd., for transactions including providing “logistical support” to Iran’s oil trade.

“The United States designates six entities that facilitate illegal transactions involving Iranian petroleum and petroleum and petrochemical products, important sources of revenue for the Iranian government,” Blinken’s statement said.

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Blinken added that with regard to Golden Warrior Shipping, the State Department identified his ship “Glory Harvest” as “blocked property”.

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Blinken referred to six entities facing action from the Biden administration. In addition to the two mentioned above, the Ministry of Finance announced action against four other entities operating the Persian Gulf Petrochemical Industry Commercial Co. of Iran to sell tens of millions of dollars worth of petrochemical goods to East Asian countries.

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The actions are being taken under Executive Order 13846, a 2018 order from then-President Donald Trump, which re-imposed sanctions on Iran after the US withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal. The Biden administration is currently looking to revive that deal in some capacity.

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“The United States continues to follow the path of diplomacy to achieve a mutual return to full implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action,” Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, Brian E. Nelson, said in a statement. “Until Iran is ready to return to full implementation of its obligations, we will continue to enforce sanctions on the illegal sale of Iranian petroleum and petrochemicals.”

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Monday’s announcement follows previous actions in June and July against companies helping Iran’s petrochemical sales.

The move comes weeks after Iran announced it would impose sanctions on 61 Americans, including former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, former National Security Adviser John Bolton and Rudy Giuliani. Iran had imposed sanctions on 51 other Americans earlier in January this year and 24 in April.