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Iran's mullahs find themselves in further isolation

Sanctions’ impact and further isolation for Mullahs' Regime
Sanctions’ impact and further isolation for Mullahs' Regime

Analysis by PMOI/MEK


March  8, 2019 - The mullahs’ regime in Iran currently faces a level of political and economic isolation that is unprecedented in its four-decade history of deceit and corruption.

Panama recently announced that the Iranian regime is not allowed anymore to use its flags for Iranian oil tankers.

Mashreghnews website, close to Iranian regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, published a report on February 25 and wrote: “In cooperation with the U.S. and in support of its sanctions against Iran, the Panama Maritime Authority has denied the 60 ships related to Iran the right to raise Panama’s flag. The Authority has also removed Panama’s flags from these 60 Iranian ships’ registrations.”

Seatrade Maritime News reports: “After a meeting with authorities of the United States Treasury Department, the US Embassy, the Maritime Authority of Panama (AMP) the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Panamanian Association of Maritime Law, Panama decided to remove the Iranian vessels and notified Panamanian consuls around the world, not to receive any payment for taxes and fees from the vessels coming from or from companies of the Islamic Republic of Iran.”

Another aspect of the increasing isolation of the ruling theocracy in Tehran is a continuing decrease in its oil exports to even destinations like China.

State-run Tasnim news agency quotes Reuters, writing: “Asia’s crude oil imports from Iran dipped in January to the lowest in two months after top buyers China and India slowed down purchases and as Japan recorded zero imports for a third month, government and trade data showed.”

“Asia’s top four buyers of Iranian crude - China, India, Japan and South Korea - imported a total 710,699 barrels per day of crude from Iran in January, 49 percent lower than the same month in 2018, the data collated by Thomson Reuters showed,” Tasnim further wrote.

On a separate note, a reporter from the Young Journalists Club, a state-run news agency founded by Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting organization (IRIB), asks the spokesperson for the Iranian foreign ministry, Bahram Qassemi: “Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper claims that some diplomatic sources of the four European countries [Germany, France, Italy, and the UK] have put some rules and conditions in place regarding Iran’s relations with four other countries, including Yemen, Syria, Iraq, and Lebanon, and have asked Iran to mend its relations in light of those rules. I want to know if there is such a request at all, and if so, will the foreign ministry accept it or not?”

Qassemi, who appeared pretty surprised by the question, responded: “I don’t have such a reading or information other then what is mentioned in some media like Asharq Al-Awsat. I think this is an incomplete statement and is not right. Indeed, we have some differences in taste and viewpoints with some countries, including some European countries, about the Islamic Republic of Iran’s regional policies.”

Another aspect of the Iranian regime’s increasing isolation is the deteriorating financial situation of Iranian terrorist proxies throughout the region.

Lebanon’s Hezbollah is one of the major non-state, Iran-sponsored terrorist actors in the region which was always flush with Iranian cash but seems to be going through a period of economic austerity.

Abdulrahman Al-Rashed, Asharq Al-Awsat editor in chief, wrote on March 2: “In a meeting with women from women councils, Hassan Nasrallah, leader of Lebanon’s Hezbollah, talked about the sufferings of his party and a lack of financial support.”

“We need to be tolerant to each other and children shouldn’t expect a lot of money from their fathers,” the article quoted Hassan Nasrallah saying to the Hezbollah women.

Meanwhile, Iranian president Hassan Rouhani’s government is betting on the European INSTEX, while putting pressure on its opponents to swiftly approve the FATF bills in the Expediency Discernment Council.

Nonetheless, pundits and officials from both ruling factions agree that the European financial mechanism won’t help the Iranian ailing economy.