US records show Iranian oil cargo landed a month after the ship was seized


FILE PHOTO: A gas flare on an oil production platform is seen alongside an Iranian flag in the gulf on July 25, 2005. REUTERS / Raheb Homavandi

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – A shipment of 1.033 million barrels of Iranian crude landed on US shores in March, according to data from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), the second shipment of Iranian oil to be imported into the United States since 1991.

The cargo was recorded in EIA data released late last week for the month following the seizure by US authorities of the Liberian-flagged tanker Achilleas, which was carrying Iranian crude.

The EIA gave no further details about the Iranian shipment, and the agency could not be reached for comment outside of U.S. office hours. Monday is a statutory holiday in the United States.

The United States last recorded Iranian crude and oil imports of 3,000 barrels per day for October 2020, according to EIA data, as well as oil that Washington had seized as part of its sanctions.

Refinitiv Eikon shipping data showed the Achilleas unloaded its cargo at the U.S. port on the Gulf of Galveston in March.

The seizure was in line with severe economic sanctions imposed by Washington on Tehran for its nuclear program and the designation by the United States of a number of Iranian groups as terrorist organizations, continuing decades of resentment between the two nations. Iran dismisses US accusations of wrongdoing.

Iran has been in talks with world powers since April, working on measures Tehran and Washington must take on nuclear sanctions and activities to return to full compliance with the 2015 nuclear pact.

Reporting by Florence Tan, Gavin Maguire and Nidhi Verma; Edited by Kenneth Maxwell and Tom Hogue

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