Sunday, June 23, 2024

US still undecided on seized Iranian oil ship: Report

US President Joe Biden and his administration remain undecided on a seized Iranian oil tanker that has been stuck off a port in Texas for more than two months. It comes as the US lawmakers are pressing for an offloading of the vessel despite threats of retaliation from Tehran.

A report by Reuters news agency said a group of US lawmakers from Republican and Democratic political parties had urged Biden to resolve the delay in the transfer the oil cargo from Suez Rajan, an Iranian tanker that has remained in waters 80 kilometers from Houston since May 30.

No shipping company is accepting to unload the cargo from Suez Rajan out of fear of repercussions from Iran as the country has warned that it would retaliate against any firm unloading Iranian oil from a seized tanker.

In fact, companies fear their ships will be shunned by oil buyers in future if they lighter Suez Rajan.

However, US lawmakers said in a letter addressed to Biden and senior members of his government that Americans will constantly live in fear of Iranian retaliation if the cargo is not transferred.

They said that Biden’s administration should show to Iran that it cannot prevent Washington from enforcing its sanctions.

Experts say Suez Rajan’s case is a clear example that US sanctions against Iran have become ineffective as it shows that Washington is unable to force Iran to accept its foreign policy and military demands.

That comes as Iran has also emerged from the economic impacts of sanctions more than five years after they were imposed after the US withdrew from a landmark international deal on Iran’s nuclear program, known as the JCPOA.

Some analysts hope an emerging prisoner swap deal between the US and Iran would pave the way for a revival of the JCPOA in the future.

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