On Monday, the US special envoy to Iran announced his country’s intention to increase pressure on China to stop oil imports from Iran, considering that reviving the nuclear deal is “not a priority” now.
Robert Malley said in an interview with “Bloomberg” TV that China “is the main destination for illegal exports from Iran,” noting that talks to discourage Beijing from buying “will intensify.”
He added that the United States “will take the steps that we must take, to stop the export of Iranian oil and deter countries from buying it. We have not eased any of our sanctions against Iran, especially those related to Iran’s sale of oil.”
Shipments of Iranian crude oil have risen in recent months, in defiance of Washington’s rebuke, and as those flows appear to be destined for China, the world’s largest importer.
Mali: “We are not well”
“We are not fine. Can we implement our sanctions perfectly? No. But we will do everything we can to make sure they are enforced,” Mali said of Iran’s soaring oil exports.
He denied that the United States is, as some energy traders speculate, “happy” to have Iranian oil on global markets, as long as it helps keep prices under control.-
Brent crude rose to nearly $130 a barrel in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February of last year 2022, which caused a sharp rise in US oil prices and hurt President Joe Biden politically.--
Brent has since fallen to $88, but many analysts, including Morgan Stanley, expect it to rise above $100 again later this year.
‘Not on the agenda’
Regarding the Iranian nuclear deal, Mali repeated the statements of other US officials about the collapse of negotiations to revive the nuclear agreement signed with Iran in 2015, saying that “the United States is focused on preventing Iran from using violence against demonstrators at home and preventing it from supporting Russian operations in Ukraine.”
He added, “Our focus has shifted to the protests that have taken place in Iran since last September, and what we can do to counter that, and to the possibility of preventing it from supporting Russia. The nuclear deal is no longer on our agenda.”
The United States reimposed sanctions on Iran and its oil exports in 2018, after withdrawing from an agreement aimed at containing its nuclear program. In response, Tehran intensified uranium enrichment activities and restricted monitoring by the International Atomic Energy Agency.
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