The U.S. State and Treasury Departments announced sanctions Thursday against nine entities identified as working with Iran's petrochemical and petroleum products trade that worked around previous U.S. sanctions.
A statement from U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken says the targeted companies include six Iran-based companies, two Singapore-based entities, and one Malaysian-based company, all involved in the production and/or sale and distribution of petrochemicals or petroleum.
In a statement, Under Treasury Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian Nelson said Iran is increasingly turning to buyers in East Asia to sell its petrochemical and petroleum products in violation of U.S. sanctions.
Nelson said, "The United States remains focused on targeting Tehran's sources of illicit revenue and will continue to enforce its sanctions against those who wittingly facilitate this trade."
In his statement, Blinken likewise said Thursday's action demonstrates the U.S. commitment to disrupt Iran's efforts to circumvent sanctions.
The latest sanctions against the Islamic republic come as relations between it and the West are increasingly strained. Recent efforts to revive Iran's 2015 nuclear deal have stalled, and Iran's government continues its violent crackdown on nationwide anti-government protests.
Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.