The United States on Friday imposed sanctions on Iran’s petrochemical industry, vowing to target more of the Islamic regime’s sources of revenue after curbing its vital oil exports.
Washington also announced action against companies based in Cyprus, Kyrgyzstan, Ukraine and the United Arab Emirates for support to Iranian entities accused of involvement in the country’s controversial nuclear program.
US officials said they were taking action against Iran’s petrochemical industry as it represented the Iranian government’s largest source of revenue after oil, which has been severely curtailed by a US-led sanctions campaign.
“We are committed to intensifying the pressure against Iran, not only by adopting new sanctions, but also by actively enforcing our sanctions and preventing sanctions evasion,” David Cohen, the Treasury Department point man on sanctions, said in a statement.
“We will continue to work with our partners around the world to ensure that the sanctions pressure on Iran builds so long as Iran continues to defy its… international obligations,” he said.
The United States slapped sanctions that include a ban on US-based financial transactions on the Niksima Food & Beverage Co., a Dubai-based frozen yogurt and dessert company.
The State Department accused the company of receiving payments on behalf of Iran’s Jam Petrochemical Company, which was put under the same sanctions.
The Treasury Department also identified eight Iranian petrochemical companies as being under the control of the Tehran government, which subjects them to US sanctions.
The United States, Israel and European nations have demanded that Iran end sensitive uranium work, fearing that it could be used to develop a nuclear bomb. Iran insists its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes.
Since last year, the United States has brandished sanctions against anyone who buys Iran’s oil. In its latest move, it punished Ferland Co., which is based in Cyprus and Ukraine, for allegedly assisting the Iranian National Tanker Company.
US authorities also took action against several individuals and airlines for alleged cooperation with Iran, including Kyrgyzstan-based Kyrgyz Trans Avia and Ukraine-based Ukrainian-Mediterranean Airlines, also known as Um Air.
Despite the tough sanctions, the United States on Thursday lifted a ban on laptops, mobile telephones and other equipment, saying the step would help ordinary Iranians circumvent government controls.
[Image via Agence France-Presse]
While coronavirus cases spike in the South, the Northeast seems to have it under control – here’s what changed
“Hospital Capacity Crosses Tipping Point in U.S. Coronavirus Hot Spots” – Wall Street Journal
This is a headline I hoped to not see again after the number of coronavirus infections had finally started to decline in the Northeast and Pacific Northwest. However, the pandemic has now shifted to the South and the West – with Arizona, Florida, California and Texas as hot spots.
At the same time, cases, hospitalizations and the percentage of positive tests in Northeastern states have declined. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo recently declared, “We now have the lowest transmission rate in the United States of America.” In fact, there are now more daily hospitalizations in Arizona than in New York, Pennsylvania and the entire Northeast combined.
Largest bank in the US holds back $10 billion anticipating Americans won’t be able to pay their mortgage
Last week it was revealed that nearly one-third of Americans couldn't pay their mortgages or their rent. It's the third month in a row with over 30 percent of American renters and homeowners showing that they're in trouble, despite the stimulus check from Washington.
Tuesday, the Wall Street Journal wrote that the largest bank in the United States, JP Morgan Chase, put aside $10 billion, anticipating that the numbers of home loan defaults are going to get far worse.
Burger King unveils Whopper from cows on green diet
For those seeking to tackle climate change and get a fast food fix, Burger King has the answer -- a Whopper from cows that fart and burp less.
The fast-food giant announced Tuesday that select restaurants in five US cities -- New York, Miami, Portland, Los Angeles and Austin, Texas -- would be serving Whoppers made from "reduced methane emissions" beef.
The chain says that adding just 100 grams of lemongrass leaves to a cow's diet late in life could reduce their output of methane, a greenhouse gas responsible for global warming.
Initial study results revealed an up to 33 percent reduction in methane emissions from cows on the new diet in the last three to four months of their lives, Burger King said.