Iran's military tied to oil, U.S. says

Sept. 25, 2012 at 7:29 AM

WASHINGTON, Sept. 25 (UPI) -- A Washington policy center welcomed action from the U.S. Treasury Department that ties the Iranian energy sector to the country's military.

The Treasury Department sent a report to U.S. lawmakers that describes the National Iranian Oil Co. as "an agent or affiliate" of the country's Revolutionary Guard Corps.

Iranian Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi was a brigadier general in the Iranian military.

Washington policy center Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a frequent critic of Tehran, said it applauded the department's findings.

FDD Executive Director Mark Dubowitz said the findings are proof that the military in Iran is strongly linked to the oil sector.

"NIOC is the lynchpin of the Iranian energy sector and has operated as the ultimate front company in trying to obscure the role of the IRGC in Iran's petroleum sector," he said in a statement.

The Treasury Department said the IRGC was suspected of trying to sell Iranian oil in a way that evaded international sanctions.

"This will accelerate the decline of Iranian petroleum exports and production," said Dubowitz.

The designation extends the reach of U.S. sanctions targeting Iran.

Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Trending Stories
Pepsi to release 'Back to the Future Part II' inspired Pepsi Perfect
Nobel Prize in medicine awarded to parasitic disease scientists
Womb transplants begin in U.K. after Sweden's success
Gay Vatican priest comes out day before Pope Francis begins synod on family issues
Scientists find roadmap that may lead to 'exercise pill'