Today: 14-04-2024

US House Overwhelmingly Approves Legislation to Strengthen Sanctions on Iranian Oil: A Pivotal Move Unfolding

"U.S. House Passes Strong Sanctions on Iranian Oil in Bipartisan Vote

WASHINGTON, Nov 3 (Reuters) — In a significant bipartisan move, the U.S. House of Representatives easily approved the Stop Harboring Iranian Petroleum (SHIP) bill on Friday. The bill, passing with a decisive 342-69 vote, aims to strengthen sanctions on Iranian oil by imposing measures on foreign ports and refineries processing petroleum exported from Iran, violating U.S. sanctions.

This legislative action comes in the aftermath of the October 7 attacks on Israel by Hamas, resulting in the deaths of at least 1,400 people, predominantly civilians. While Hamas has historically received support from Iran, Tehran has denied any involvement in these attacks. The SHIP bill underscores a clear message to entities like China, Russia, and others, warning them against aiding Iran in evading sanctions and supporting terrorism.

Representatives Mike Lawler (Republican) and Jared Moskowitz (Democrat) emphasized the bill's intent to hold bad actors accountable. They stated, 'Do not help Iran avoid sanctions and assist them in their funding of terror, or face the consequences.'

For the bill to become law, it must now pass through the Senate and receive President Joe Biden's signature. A parallel bill in the Senate, sponsored by Senators Marco Rubio, John Kennedy, Maggie Hassan, and Jacky Rosen, awaits consideration.

Despite the passing of U.S. sanctions on Iranian oil related to its nuclear program, Iran's crude exports have surged. The effectiveness of the legislation remains uncertain, as national security waivers often accompany such sanctions, providing presidents with discretion in their application. Additionally, China, a major importer of Iranian oil, may continue imports despite new sanctions.

Iran, maintaining that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes, has seen its crude exports reach over 1.5 million barrels per day, the highest in over four years, with more than 80% of shipments going to China, as reported by consultancies FGE and Vortexa in September.

Reporting by Timothy Gardner; additional reporting by Richard Cowan; Editing by David Gregorio"

"In conclusion, the resounding passage of the Stop Harboring Iranian Petroleum (SHIP) bill by the U.S. House of Representatives marks a robust bipartisan effort to bolster sanctions on Iranian oil. Fueled by concerns over Iran's potential involvement in recent attacks on Israel, the legislation targets foreign ports and refineries engaged in processing Iranian petroleum in violation of U.S. sanctions. While Representatives Mike Lawler and Jared Moskowitz stress the bill's deterrent message to global actors like China and Russia, the efficacy of these sanctions remains uncertain. The bill's journey now hinges on Senate approval and President Joe Biden's signature. As the geopolitical landscape unfolds, questions linger about the potential impact on Iran's crude exports and the ability of sanctions to curtail such activities amid complex international dynamics."