India to buy Venezuela oil under swap deal amid US sanctions

[ Editor’s Note: India has been the next country to challenge US unilateral sanctions on Venezuela. As a major arms dealer with the US, it has some leverage with the US that others do not. But we shall wait and see if Trump twitters a response.

And mind you that India is doing this with its relations with China on a rollercoaster, and maintaining close ties with Russia despite Trump’s bitter disappointment with India’s buying state of the art weapons systems from Russia rather than the US.

Such barter deals circumvent the stranglehold the US has through its control of the SWIFT international payment system. India seems to be joining Iran now to demonstrate that it also has a huge number of barter trade options, due to its diversified economy.

We have not heard a word from Guaido in a long time.

Modi is also winning domestic political points that he can protect Indians from political blackmail when many others cannot. Modi is way up in the polls, while Trump is way down, so one might expect Modi has decided that Trump will not be around much longer.

The bad news for Maduro this week was that Britain has legalized with a court ruling that it did not steal Venezuela’s gold. It just gave it to Juan Guaido via the convenient claim that he was president and the legal owner.

Gosh, why did not Britain want a Venezuela referendum to let the people decide who got their money? So here we have ex-colonial master Britain still wanting to play the old role as a world power when it is not, and not even a good pretender at that.

Meanwhile the Venezuela people suffer because they do not want to be ruled by a US puppet, something that would be a UN Charter violation anyway, right?Jim W. Dean ]

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– First published … July 10, 2020

India has decided to receive a cargo of Venezuelan crude under a swap deal in the face of a US sanctions regime which has put the Latin American country in throes of a fuel crisis. 

Mumbai-based Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) announced its plan to load its first cargo of Venezuelan crude after a three-month recess due to lower demands.

The Indian multinational conglomerate company is scheduled this week to receive a 1.9-million barrel cargo of crude at Venezuela’s main oil port of Jose, a Reuters report said.

Reliance said in exchange for the Venezuelan crude oil, it will deliver diesel fuel to the Venezuelan state-owned oil and natural gas company, PDVSA.

The Indian firm has previously stated that a fuel-for-crude swap deal with PDVSA will continue despite crippling economic sanctions imposed in 2019 by the United States on Caracas in an effort to drive down oil revenue to the government of President Nicolas Maduro.

Washington has imposed several rounds of paralyzing economic sanctions against the oil-rich South American country, aiming to oust Maduro and replace him with US-backed opposition leader Juan Guaido.

Maduro has denounced the US government for its continuous “criminal sanctions” against the suffering Latin American nation amid the deadly coronavirus pandemic.

Caracas, in response, has vowed to take legal action against Washington at the International Criminal Court (ICC) over the sanctions imposed on the nation.

Venezuela has a similar fuel-for-crude swap deal with Italy’s Eni and Spain’s Repsol, who take Venezuelan crude in exchange for diesel supplied as part of debt repayment deals.

Iran has sent five tankers since April to Venezuela, breaching a de facto American blockade. Last month, the United States imposed sanctions on five Iranian ship captains who delivered oil to Venezuela.

US prosecutors have filed a lawsuit to seize the gasoline aboard four tankers that are currently heading to Venezuela, the latest attempt by the Trump administration to increase economic pressure on Caracas.



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  1. The US would do this under the “Right of Unipolarism”…which is why the concept was designed. If we can’t get what we want by asking or negotiations, then we will use our military. But this brings up the long known issue there the military is supposed to be able to refuse an illegal order. Of course Trump would state that no order he gave could be illegal, and off we would go on another 10 years of litigation in our medieval judicial system.

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