UPDATED 1:14 PM PT — Tues. Nov. 20, 2018
The Treasury Department is slapping new sanctions on an alleged joint Iranian-Russian oil smuggling circle.
In a statement Tuesday, the Treasury said it blacklisted one Iranian and three Russian companies over claims they smuggled oil from Iran into Syria.
Treasury Department Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the Russian-Iranian scheme supplied fuel to Assad as well as terror groups Hamas and Hezbollah. It generated money for Iran’s activities in the Middle East.
Russian diplomats are blasting — what they called — America’s questionable unilateral moves.
“Western capitals don’t seem to want to work with new centers of economic and political influence,” stated Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. “They impose a wide range of reprisals on those who do not agree with them — from military force and unilateral economic sanctions to demonization and defamation in a ‘highly likely’ manner.”
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is welcoming the Treasury’s move by assuring there will be grave consequences for anyone smuggling oil into Syria and evading the Iran sanctions.