Israel company sanctioned by US for ties to Iran

Hillary Clinton penalizes seven companies, including Israel's Ofer Brothers Group, under Iran Sanctions Act of 1996.

May 24, 2011 18:13
1 minute read.
A ZIM cargo ship.

ZIM cargo ship 311. (photo credit: Courtesy)

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has announced sanctions on seven international companies due to their unsavory ties to Iran’s energy sector, and one of those companies is based in Israel.

The Ofer Brothers Group, a familyowned business that owns Zim Integrated Shipping Services, the world’s 10th largest shipping company; a majority of the Israel Corporation, the country’s largest holding company; and more, has been slapped with penalties for allegedly providing an $8.65 million tanker to the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines, according to the US Department of State.

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We believe that Tanker Pacific and Ofer Brothers Group failed to exercise due diligence and did not heed publicly available and easily obtainable information that would have indicated that they were dealing with IRISL,” the State Department said in a statement.

Ofer Brothers Group denied it had ever sold ships to the Islamic Republic.

“We have never sold ships to Iran,” it said in a statement.

The Ofer Brothers Group also has holdings in Israel Chemicals, Oil Refineries Ltd. and Bank Mizrahi.

The sanctioned companies include PCCI (Jersey/Iran), Royal Oyster Group (UAE), Speedy Ship (UAE/Iran), Tanker Pacific (Singapore), Associated Shipbroking (Monaco) and Petróleos de Venezuela.

The State Department was clear in its goal for imposing penalties on the companies under the Iran Sanctions Act of 1996: “By imposing these sanctions, the secretary sends a stern and clear message to companies around the world: Those who continue to irresponsibly support Iran’s energy sector and help facilitate Iran’s efforts to evade US sanctions will face serious consequences.”

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