May 22, 2020 22:44 Asia/Tehran [Updated: May 23, 2020 03:35 Asia/Tehran]
  • Tankers transporting Iranian fuel approach the Caribbean

A flotilla of five tankers carrying Iranian fuel for Venezuela is approaching the Caribbean, with the first vessel expected to reach the South American country’s waters on Sunday, according to Refinitiv Eikon tracking data.

Iran PressAmerica: Iran is supplying about 1.53 million barrels of gasoline and alkylate to Venezuela, according to both governments, sources, and calculations made by TankerTrackers.com based on the vessels’ draft levels.

The shipments have caused a diplomatic standoff between Iran, Venezuela, and the United States as both nations are under U.S. sanctions. Washington is considering measures in response to the shipments, which the administration believes are being paid with gold, a U.S. official told Reuters last week.

Venezuela’s defense minister said the military will escort the tankers once they reach the nation’s exclusive economic zone.

Iran-flagged tanker Fortune, the first in the flotilla, was approaching the Caribbean Sea on Friday. It has been navigating with its satellite signal on since it passed the Suez Canal earlier in May. The four other vessels are following the same route across the Atlantic Ocean, the Eikon data showed.

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