Iran refuses to supply oil to Greece
Azerbaijan, Baku, Feb. 26 / Trend T.Jafarov /
Iranian oil tankers, carrying 500,000 barrels of crude oil to the destination of Greece's biggest refiner Hellenic Petroleum, just returned as Iran refused to deliver the consignment.
"Iran's oil tankers Iran have not delivered 500,000 barrels of oil intended for Greece, in connection with the directive to return them back to the manufacturer," Fars news agency reported on Sunday.
It was reported earlier that Iran has cut oil supply to France and Netherlands, while issuing an ultimatum to four countries - Italy, Spain, Greece, Portugal - which says that if the long-term agreement is not signed over next two years with Iran, the country will stop oil supplies.
The EU formally imposed an oil embargo on Iran and agreed to a freeze on the assets of the Iranian Central Bank on January 23, but existing contracts will be honored until July 1. The EU imports about 20 per cent of Iranian oil which primarily is supplied to the Union's southern countries - Italy, Spain and Greece.
After the imposition of sanctions, Tehran, while continuing to fulfill existing contracts for the export of hydrocarbons to Greece, did not require financial guarantees of Athens's payment for its supplies. Earlier this month, Greece became unable to pay for Iranian oil and as a result it continued to receive "black gold" without payment. In this situation, there were expectations that Iran would stop its delivery long before scheduled for the July 1 termination of purchase under the EU sanctions.