Iran's Oil Minister Bijan Zangeneh said the U.S. and its allies made a big mistake by politicizing oil and using it as a weapon in reference to the recent U.S. announcement that sanctions waivers for five importers of Iranian crude would not be renewed, the Iranian Oil Ministry's news outlet Shana reported on Tuesday.
Addressing the Iranian parliament, Zangeneh said: "Today, in this aggressive economic war that the U.S. has launched against Iran, the Iranian nation, the oil industry is at the tip of outrageous offensive attacks."
The U.S. administration told Japan, South Korea, Turkey, China and India on Monday that they will no longer be exempt from sanctions if they continue to import oil from Iran after the sanctions waivers expire on May 2.
"We will exert maximum effort to break U.S. sanctions," Zangeneh said, adding that the aim of bringing Iran’s oil exports to a halt would never be realized.
The official reiterated that supply and demand dynamics are already fragile in the oil market.
"The oil market is very unpredictable, and in this fragile situation, it cannot be assured whether oil is being supplied to the market as much as needed, while some countries in the region overstate their surplus oil production capacity in order to provoke the U.S. and put pressure on Iran," he said, adding such statements issued by the U.S. and its regional supporters "betray their concern for instability and fragility of the market".
"I repeat, the U.S. and its allies have committed a big mistake by politicizing oil and using it as a weapon and the aftermaths of which will be felt by themselves," he said.
By Hale Turkes