Russia regards American sanctions against a Russian Energy Ministry unit as baseless, the country’s energy minister Alexander Novak has said, according to TASS news agency.
The U.S. imposed the measures against Promsyreimport last month, saying the Energy Ministry subsidiary was involved in a “terror financing scheme” together with Iran in Syria.
“We consider any sanctions unfounded, because they do not comply with international law. And this goes for Promsyreimport, too,” the state-owned news agency quoted Novak as saying.
According to authorities in the United States, Promsriereimport facilitated oil supplies to the Syrian government of Bashar al-Asad. The company was used by Russia for transactions between Russia and Iran under an ongoing “oil-for-goods” scheme.
The U.S. Treasury Department said Promsyereimport is the main link in supplying Iranian oil to Syria using tankers with the automatic identification system turned off, and Andrei Dogaev, the company’s deputy general manager who was under sanctions, personally supervised deliveries.
The United States has imposed several categories of sanctions on Russia in response to “malicious or objectionable” Russian activity.
In the latest measures imposed on November 20, the U.S. also targeted two other Russian entities – Global Vision Group and MB Bank, a subsidiary of Iranian Melli bank in Russia. An Iranian company, Tadbir Kish Medical and Pharmaceutical Co., was also added to the U.S. sanctions list.