On Thursday, during a congressional hearing, Assistant secretary of states for Economic and Business Affairs, Manisha Singh warned that United States is prepared to take the strongest action possible against the countries and entities that will not assist us in complying with Iranian sanctions.
Singh said, “We are prepared to take the strongest actions possible on people who will not assist us in complying with this new range of sanctions that we are putting back into place”.
Congressman Eliot Engel asked a question to Manisha Singh, “If any of the major buyers of Iranian crude, which is China, India, Japan, South Korea, an Europe, if they refuse to sharply cut their purchases, are we really prepared to cut their banks off from the global banking system, which is the penalty under the US sanctions? Are we really prepared for that?”
Responding to Engel’s question Singh said, “In response, we are prepared to take the most serious actions possible on Iran. We need to demonstrate to the Iranian regime that we will not tolerate its development of a nuclear program for illicit purposes”.
She added, “We are having conversations with our allies, and our goal is to get purchase of Iranian crude oil down to zero by November 5. That’s a critical goal for us”.
Singh said, “We are talking with all of our allies, including the countries that you mentioned, helping them to understand that the only way that we can achieve this global goal of Iran’s nuclear program not commencing is through partnership and cooperation with our allies as you have indicated”.
Singh further added, “We are trying to explain to them that the bigger picture here is we need to work together on putting this pressure onto Iran, and the sales of oil are a critical way to do that. We are prepared to take the strongest actions possible on people who will not assist us in complying with this new range of sanctions that we are putting back into place”.
India is the second biggest importer of Iranian oil after China. Iran has offered India the longer credit period and competitive prices if India continues to buy oil from Iran even after November 4, 2018.