Hong Kong dismisses US warnings over vessel carrying Iranian oil

TEHRAN, Jun. 01 (MNA) – Hong Kong has dismissed US warnings that it could face sanctions if it permits a vessel carrying oil produced in Iran to stop at its port and utilize services.

The dismissal shows a certain coolness towards Washington’s effort, commenced at the start of May, to drive all Iranian oil shipments away from the world market—and it may be an early indication that the worsening of the trade war between the US and China has prompted the Chinese to show less cooperation with the ‘zero Iranian oil’ strategy adopted by the Trump administration.

Hong Kong’s Commerce and Economic Development Bureau (CEDB) reportedly observed that the Hong Kong SAR (HKSAR) government has been strictly implementing sanctions decided by the UN Security Council on Iran since the United Nations Sanctions (under the nuclear deal, or Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) Regulation was enacted.

But the CEDB said the UN Security Council has not imposed any restrictions on the export of petroleum from Iran, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported.

While specific countries may impose unilateral sanctions against certain other countries based on their own considerations, those sanctions are not within the scope of the UN Security Council sanctions implemented by the HKSAR, the CEDB was cited as saying.

Washington warned Hong Kong to be on alert for the vessel, the Pacific Bravo, carrying Iranian petroleum, and added that any entity providing services to it would be violating US sanctions, Reuters reported.

US unilateral sanctions were imposed on Iran after Donald Trump pulled Washington out of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. The US has been carrying out a pressure policy on Iran to force the country into another round of negotiations. Iran says it will not enter into any direct or indirect talks with the US as long as the Western country continues to violate its commitments to the JCPOA.


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