China rejects US request to cut Iran oil imports

TEHRAN, Aug. 03 (MNA) – The US has been unable to persuade China, the world’s top crude buyer and Iran’s No. 1 customer, to cut Iranian oil imports, according to two officials familiar with the negotiations.

Bloomberg reported on Friday that Beijing has rejected US request to cut Iranian oil imports, dealing a blow to President Donald Trump’s efforts to isolate the Islamic Republic after his withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear accord.

China has, however, agreed not to ramp up purchases of Iranian crude, according to the officials, who asked not to be identified because discussions with China and other countries continue.

Teams of US officials have been visiting capitals around the world to try to choke off sales of Iranian oil by early November, when US sanctions are due to snap back into effect. While the Trump administration has said it wants to cut Iranian oil exports to zero by Nov. 4, most analysts viewed that target as unlikely.

After US withdrawal from the ghistoric nuclear deal, other partners in the agreement, including the UK, France, Germany and Russia, criticized the US move to quit the deal.

LR/IRN82989910

News Code 136355

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