Criminal networks are using Iran as a transit point for illicit Somali charcoal exports that earn Islamist militants al Shabaab millions of dollars annually in tax, U.N. sanctions monitors said in a report seen by Reuters.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) estimates that Iran's economy fell into a recession this year that will get worse next year as a result of renewed U.S. sanctions on Tehran.
Iran’s crude exports fell further in the first week of October, according to tanker data and an industry source, taking a major hit from U.S. sanctions and throwing a challenge to other OPEC oil producers as they seek to cover the shortfall.
SANCTIONS, BUSINESS RISKS, & OTHER ECONOMIC NEWS
India hopes to secure a waiver from U.S. sanctions on Iran before they take effect on Nov. 4, as it had significantly cut Iranian oil imports before the deadline, officials said on Monday.
US prosecutors have told Standard Chartered they are preparing to bring criminal charges against two of the bank’s former employees over alleged sanction breaches involving Iran-linked companies, according to people briefed on the matter. The move indicates a hardening of the approach of US officials to breaches by banks and follows President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the international nuclear agreement with Iran and re-imposing economic sanctions.
US sanctions on Iran will not impact Qatar Airways' flights to the Islamic republic, the airline's boss Akbar al-Baker said on Monday.
The United States has granted BP and Serica Energy a new license to run a North Sea gas field partly owned by Iran in a rare exemption by U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration as it prepares to renew sanctions on Tehran next month.
Iran’s Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh has dismissed as “nonsense” claims by the Saudi crown prince that Saudi Arabia can replace sanctions-hit Iranian oil in the market.
The Trump administration is waging economic warfare against the Islamic Republic of Iran, and rightly so… But rather than attack the financial basis of terror with a scalpel, President Trump’s national security team is wielding an axe. When it comes to Iraq, that axe promises to benefit Iran at the expense of Iraqi nationalists and liberals who would like nothing more than to push back Iranian influence.
TERROSIM & EXTREMISM
On July 11, 2018, the government of Argentina took its first action against Hezbollah by freezing the financial assets of 14 individuals belonging to the Barakat clan in South America. Last week, Brazilian Federal Police arrested the leader of this clan, Assad Ahmad Barakat, who was sanctioned by U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) in 2004 and is considered one of Hezbollah’s most important financiers.
While they are in jail on allegations of financing the terror group, Hezbollah, the companies founded by these bank-rollers remain operational in Angola, the Southern African country that has earned a reputation as a refuge for international terror financiers.
U.S.-IRAN RELATIONS & NEGOTIATIONS
The United States on Monday asked judges at the International Court of Justice to throw out a claim by Iran to recover $1.75 billion (1.5 billion euros) in national bank assets seized by U.S. courts. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2016 that the assets must be turned over to American families of victims of the 1983 bombing of a U.S. Marine Corps barracks in Beirut, among others.
“Threaten and rebrand” negotiating isn’t pretty. That doesn’t mean it can’t work.
RUSSIA, SYRIA, ISRAEL, HEZBOLLAH, LEBANON & IRAN
A senior Iranian official on Monday said Israel would be hard-pressed to conduct airstrikes in Syria after Russia provided the country with the advanced S-300 air defense system.