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Fresh US sanctions target Iran’s oil revenues for first time in months

Ofac targets 20 companies and individuals selling commodities on behalf of Iran’s military and the IRGC

The US has slapped sanctions designated to cripple Iran’s oil revenues for first time since March, targeting networks selling commodities on behalf of Iran’s armed forces and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force

THE US has blacklisted 20 individuals and entities it says engaged in facilitating of hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of commodity sales for Iran’s armed forces and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force.

While the US Office of Foreign Asset Control said it has targeted a “large Iranian military financial facilitation network”, it is the first action targeting Iran’s revenues from oil, products and petrochemicals sales since March.

Commodity sales generate the equivalent of billions of dollars for Tehran, Ofac said, which it then uses to support its proxies around the Middle East, such as Hamas, Hezbollah, and the Houthis.

“The Iranian government allocates billions of dollars’ worth of commodities, including oil, to Iranian military entities, including the Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces Logistics (MODAFL) and the Armed Forces General Staff (AFGS) as part of the Iranian military’s annual budget,” Ofac said in a statement.

“This includes specific commodity allotments for MODAFL, the IRGC, and the AFGS, which sell the commodities to foreign buyers to generate revenue.”

Iran’s oil exports have reached record levels over the past few months, with the US appearing to be turning a blind eye to Iran’s booming energy trade amid rising global oil prices and negotiations for a prisoner exchange deal that concluded in September.

In the wake of Hamas’ atrocities on October 7, the White House has faced pressure from Democrats and Republicans to take action against the Islamic Republic for its role in bankrolling Hamas and training its militants.



US pressure group United Against Nuclear Iran welcomed Ofac’s actions but said they fell well short of what is needed to choke Iran’s revenue streams and hurt its ability to fund Hamas and its other proxies.

“While Ofac’s sanctions on over 20 individuals and entities involved with Iran’s military and financial networks mark a significant step, it is imperative to acknowledge the shortcomings in these measures,” UANI’s chief of staff Claire Jungman told Lloyd’s List.

“Specifically, the lack of designations on vessels transporting Iranian oil is a glaring oversight. Targeting the oil industry is a positive move, but to effectively disrupt Iran’s revenue streams that fund regional conflicts, a more comprehensive approach is necessary, one that includes sanctions on all elements of the supply chain, including these vessels.”

Seven individuals and entities sanctioned today are related to previous Ofac actions from May and December of last year that targeted an illicit oil sales network overseen by Sitki Ayan, a Turkish businessman and reported confidant of Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

The seven helped sidestep the US designations by transferring business from the blacklisted entities to other companies, Ofac said.


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