Iran warns US against 'piracy' on fuel shipment to Venezuela

Iran warns US against 'piracy' on fuel shipment to Venezuela
Iran and the US are at odds over a shipment of fuel to Venezuela, as both countries suffer under crippling sanctions.
2 min read
16 May, 2020
The Iranian news agency is pro-government [Getty]
A pro-government Iranian news agency has warned the US of ‘piracy’ against an Iranian fuel shipment to Venezuela.

The Nour news agency is reportedly close the Revolutionary Guards, and told America there would be repercussions if the country acted “just like pirates”.

This comes after a senior official in Donald Trump’s administration said on Thursday that the United States was considering measures to take in response to Iran’s shipment of fuel to Venezuela, which is currently suffering a serious fuel crisis, Reuters reports.

“If the United States, just like pirates, intends to create insecurity on international waterways, it would be taking a dangerous risk and that will certainly not go without repercussion,” the Nour news agency said early on Saturday.

Iran’s U-Turn

Earlier this month Iran rejected US claims that it is helping Venezuela to rebuild its oil industry, as both countries are currently experiencing crippling US sanctions.

Elliott Abrams, the envoy leading US efforts to topple Venezuela's leftist leader Nicolas Maduro, has alleged that the cash-strapped country is paying Iran in gold to restore the troubled sector.

US President Donald Trump's administration has imposed unilateral sanctions aimed at ending oil exports from Iran and Venezuela, both major crude producers.

Iran's foreign ministry in a statement called Abrams' claims "baseless", without directly addressing accusations that the Islamic republic is being paid in gold.

It accused Washington of trying to increase "pressure on Venezuela's government and disrupt trade between Iran and Venezuela."

It said US policies against Venezuela including "economic sanctions, military threats and a recent transition council" had failed.

Washington was now "trying to create obstacles in Venezuela's plan to rebuild its refineries and produce oil products such as petrol, which is in short supply due to cruel US sanctions."

Agencies contributed to this report.

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