According to a finance ministry report to be released later on Thursday and seen by Reuters, Ayan’s companies created international sales contracts for Iranian oil, arranged exports and helped launder the proceeds and trace the origin of Iranian oil. Iran’s Quds Force, a component of the IRGC.
Ayan has established commercial contracts to sell hundreds of millions of dollars worth of Iranian oil to buyers in China, the United Arab Emirates and Europe.
Ayan’s son Bahadin Ayan, his partner Kasim Ostas and one other individual will be appointed along with at least two dozen companies, including his Gibraltar-based ASP Group of Companies.
The Treasury Department will freeze all U.S. assets of the designated individuals and generally prohibit Americans from doing business with them. Those involved in certain transactions are also subject to sanctions.
The U.S. moves come as relations between the U.S. and Turkey are strained over a range of issues, including Syria policy and Ankara’s purchase of Russian air defense systems.
Most recently, Washington warned Turkey to avoid a military incursion into northern Syria after Ankara said it was preparing for a possible ground offensive against Syrian Kurdish YPG fighters. Forces (SDF).
Washington maintains tough economic sanctions against Iran and is looking for ways to increase pressure as efforts to renew the 2015 nuclear deal with Tehran have stalled.
After former President Donald Trump pulled out of the deal in 2018, US President Joe Biden tried to negotiate a return to the Iran nuclear deal.
The 2015 deal limited Iran’s uranium enrichment activities, making it harder for Tehran to develop nuclear weapons in exchange for the lifting of international sanctions. Iran refuses to buy nuclear weapons.
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