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Treasury: Iranian oil company part of IRGC

Sept. 24, 2012 at 5:20 PM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, Sept. 24 (UPI) -- The Iranian National Oil Co. is linked to the country's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and is subject to sanctions, the U.S. Treasury Department said Monday.

Because of the determination, foreign financial institutions found to have knowingly facilitated significant transactions or provided major financial services for the Iranian National Oil Co. will be subject to sanctions, the department said in a release.

The Revolutionary Guard is part of Iran's military and also is a powerful economic entity, dominating many sectors of the economy, including energy, construction, and banking, the Treasury Department said. Already a target of U.S. sanctions, it also has a history of trying to evade the punitive measures by maintaining a network of front companies.

The IRGC and some IRGC-related people and entities have been sanctioned for activities involving Iran's nuclear program, terrorism support, commission of serious human rights abuses, and most recently, activities related to human rights abuses in Syria.

The Treasury Department said the Revolutionary Guard recently coordinated a campaign to sell Iranian oil, trying to evade international sanctions, especially sanctions imposed by the European Union that prohibit the import, shipping and purchase of Iranian oil. The EU sanctions went into effect July 1. The Treasury Department also noted that a former IRGS brigadier general was named minister of the Petroleum Ministry, which oversees the oil concern.

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