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IRAN, THE CONFIDENTIAL DOSSIER/3: THE CAROUSEL

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“Iran continues to seek out elements for its prohibited activities, using complex schemes for procurement.” This judgment is contained in a report that, of course, refers to the pre-Rohani era, but that remains the latest presented (confidentially) to the top echelons of the United Nations and that certainly would be put on the table in negotiations between Tehran and the West.

The secret dossier -- in WikiLao’s possession – focuses on the progress of the Iranian nuclear program and on the tricks with which the Islamic Republic has evaded or attempted to evade the sanctions brought on by the United Nations.

In addition to the business of Pentane Chemistry Industries and  the Modern Industries Technique Company, the maneuvers of the IHSC (Irano Hind Shipping Company)have again been brought to the attention of U.N. investigators. Blacklisted by half the world, in the arc of one year IHSC has seen its business drastically reduced. Months ago the company’s liquidation was announced, and there has been news of procedures to begin closing it down. Meanwhile, write the U.N. experts, the “operations of its fleet are continuing.” The inspectors refer to “many changes in ownership” of IHSC cargo ships in which often even the flags are changed.

“Two ships, Amin 2 (previously named Amjrf) and Tour 2 (which was called Tour) remain in use at a company affiliated with Irano Hind Shipping Company.” The two cargo boats have long gone back and forth between Iran and Syria where they docked several times in Tartus and Banias (staying, almost every time, for about a month). Instead an oil tanker, the Volga, has been ceded to persons who do not seem to have anything to do with IHSC.

It certainly signals hyperactivity in the IRISL, the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines. Even through its subsidiaries, Sapid Shipping Company and Hafiz Darya Shipping Line, “It has continually changed the names, flags and owners” of its ships, 117 in all. About twenty of them have been passed around to three Iranian companies, the Mosakhar Darya Shipping Company, the Kish Roaring Ocean Shipping Company and the Oghyanous Khoroshan Kish Shipping Company.

A carousel that – in the assessment of the panel – has only one explanation: it has served to continue covering up trade that is forbidden to Iran. The document notes that 78 companies have had their assets frozen because of their “connections with the prohibited activities of Iran.”

The U.N. experts have visited 55 countries, including Italy, inspecting the ports of Rotterdam (Netherlands), the Republic of Dgibouti, Aden (Yemen) and Turkmen-bashi (Turkmenistan). They have gone as far as Guatemala, where there were checks in the port of Quetzal and the airport of the capital. Other airports where the panel has investigated are The Hague, Luxembourg and Budapest. Furthermore, there were documented visits to the border crossings between Georgia and Armenia and between Turkmenistan and Iran. The Security Council has extended the mandate of the committee for one year. It consists of eight members (representatives of France, the U.K., Germany, Russia, Japan, the United States, Nigeria and China). Until June of 2014, with respect to the embargo, the world will be breathing down Iran’s neck – Rohani or no Rohani.

(Photo: REUTERS/Darrin Zammit Lupi)

September 25, 2013