In September 2018, the US treasury sanctioned two Lebanese and one UAE based company for providing oil and/or gas to the Syrian Company for Oil Transport, an affiliate of the state-owned General Petroleum Corporation. A tanker, the ‘Gitta Gas’ chartered by Nasco Polymers Chemicals Co and Sonex Investment between 2015 and 2018 made several calls between the Syrian port of Baniyas and the Greek port of Aspropyrgos. The operator of this tanker, Benelux Overseas, based in Greece, also operates the tanker ‘Irish Gas’ which was chartered by Abar Petroleum Service SAL, the third company sanctioned by the US treasury. (1)
1. Is the HR/VP aware of any ongoing shipments of oil and/or gas between or through EU member states to the Syrian government?
2. How does the HR/VP assess the alleged involvement of a Greece-based company and the use of Greek ports relate to EU sanctions in place against Syria, including an import ban on ‘crude oil and petroleum products’?
3. Will the HR/VP start an investigation into the circumstances under which oil and gas deliveries to Syria via EU states have allegedly continued to take place in order to decide whether EU states and/or EU nationals have willingly or unwillingly violated EU sanctions and to add any additional companies and/or individuals to the EU sanctions list if necessary?