Iran's third tanker reaches Venezuelan waters

TEHRAN, May 27 (MNA) – According to Refinitiv Eikon data, the third cargo of an Iranian tanker flotilla, Petunia, carrying fuel for Venezuela on Tuesday has reached the nation’s exclusive economic zone.

As reported the first and second Iranian tankers, Forest and Fortune, have discharged at state-run PDVSA’s ports.

The Iran-flagged tanker Petunia crossed the Caribbean Sea earlier on Tuesday, following the same route as vessels Fortune and Forest. The Fortune arrived on Monday at a port serving PDVSA’s El Palito refinery.

President Nicolas Maduro said he would announce in the coming days a “plan” for fuel distribution. Gasoline is so heavily subsidized that it is essentially free, but shortages have forced Venezuelans to either wait in days-long queues or pay steep prices on the black market.

“Now we will be able to go in phases toward a new normal in terms of gasoline supply,” Maduro said in a state television address.

The United States has criticized the shipment, as both OPEC nations are under sanctions. A US official said earlier this month that President Donald Trump’s administration was considering responses to the shipment, prompting the Iranian government to warn Washington against military action.

The first Iranian vessel, the 'Fortune', successfully reached Venezuela on May 24 and was escorted into the port by the Bolivarian Navy.

The second Iranian oil tanker, the 'Forest', entered the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of Venezuela early on May 25, met by the country's navy.

The five Iranian vessels carry an estimated total of 1.53 million barrels of gasoline between them.

As the two countries of Iran and Venezuela are sanctioned by the United States, Iran’s move in sending gasoline to this Bolivarian country has been widely covered across the world and led to US' anger as well.

MNA/PR

News Code 159136

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