WASHINGTON (AP) - The Latest on U.S. sanctions on countries importing Iranian oil (all times local):
In a statement carried by the official IRNA news agency on Monday, the Foreign Ministry said: “Regarding the illegal status of the sanctions, the Islamic Republic of Iran basically has not seen and does not see any worth and validity for the waivers.”
It says Iran has intensified consultations with neighboring countries, as well as “European and international partners,” on the sanctions. The ministry says a “necessary decision” will be announced later, without elaborating.
President Donald Trump restored crippling sanctions on Iran and its vital oil industry last year after withdrawing the United States from the 2015 nuclear accord with world powers. But the U.S. issued waivers to several countries allowing them to continue purchasing Iranian oil, but on Monday said it will no longer extend them.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has criticized the U.S. decision to end sanction waivers for countries importing Iranian oil, saying the move “will not serve regional peace and stability.”
In a message posted on Twitter Monday, Cavusoglu said: “Turkey rejects unilateral sanctions and impositions on how to conduct relations with neighbors.”
Cavusoglu added the decision would harm the people of Iran. He tagged the U.S. State Department and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on his tweet.
Oil prices rose following news the Trump administration is telling five nations, including allies Japan, South Korea and Turkey, they will no longer be exempt from U.S. sanctions if they import oil from Iran.
In morning trading, benchmark U.S. crude surged $1.52, or 2.4% to $65.57 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, jumped $1.84, or 2.6% to $73.80.
Ritterbusch and Associates, an oil trading advisory firm, said in a morning note that “a complete elimination of Iranian exports is nearly impossible and that a reduction beyond current levels will likely prove limited.”
It said that the overall effect “will hinge to a large degree on the Saudis response to what is likely to be some strong requests from the Trump administration to increase productions appreciably.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (neh-ten-YAH’-hoo) is praising the Trump administration’s decision to end sanction waivers for countries importing Iranian oil.
Netanyahu said Monday that the move “is of great importance for increasing pressure on the Iranian terrorist regime.”
“We stand with the United States’ determination against Iranian aggression and this is the right way to stop it,” he said.
The White House says the U.S. is ending exemptions from sanctions for countries that import Iranian oil. In a statement, the White House said it was taking “timely action to assure that global demand is met as all Iranian oil is removed from the market.”
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was to discuss the move at the State Department Monday morning. The decision means sanctions waivers for five nations, including China and India and U.S. treaty allies Japan, South Korea and Turkey, won’t be renewed when they expire on May 2.
They were granted in part to give those countries time to eliminate their purchases of Iranian oil but also to ease any impact on global energy markets with the abrupt removal of Iran’s production.
Pompeo says now that production increases elsewhere will make up for the loss of Iranian oil on the market.
The Trump administration is poised to tell five nations, including allies Japan, South Korea and Turkey, that they will no longer be exempt from U.S. sanctions if they continue to import oil from Iran.
Officials say Secretary of State Mike Pompeo plans to announce on Monday that the administration will not renew sanctions waivers for the five countries when they expire on May 2. The others are China and India.
It was not immediately clear if any of the five would be given additional time to wind down their purchases or if they would be subject to U.S. sanctions on May 3 if they do not immediately halt imports of Iranian oil.
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