Media: Venezuela and Syria planned to sell oil to the United States in circumvention of sanctions

© AP Photo / Hasan JamaliДобыча oil. Archival photoMedia: Venezuela and Syria planned to sell oil to the United States in circumvention of sanctions© AP Photo / Hasan Jamali

Syria and Venezuela have developed a plan to bypass the anti-Syrian sanctions with secret deals in the transport of Syrian oil to the Caribbean through fictitious Russian company, reports Bloomberg, citing documents, letters and interviews. Data about the oil supply in this direction the Agency has not detected. The plant, which had allegedly made the processing of raw materials, denied the existence of such discussions.

The plan was not implemented, involves the sale of Syrian oil at a large discount Venezuela through fictitious Russian company that sent it to the refinery on the island of Aruba for processing and further transport to the filling stations in the US and in other places, the Agency said.

Venezuelan oil trader, Wilmer RUPERTI, the Agency confirmed its participation in the scheme, but said that more has to do with her. Syrian officials turned to RUPERTI in early 2012 in Caracas, said in a statement. He recommended the conclusion of a five-year contract for the supply of 50 thousand to 200 thousand barrels of Syrian oil a day, and also deposited another 6 million barrels, the Agency reports. In a letter to the then Syrian Ambassador in Venezuela to Hassan Abbas RUPERTI said that the essence of the scheme is to «to avoid a boycott of the US and the EU,» adds Bloomberg.

According to the two sources of the Agency, the chain of negotiations was attended by several leaders of the US-based «daughter» PDVSA Citgo Petroleum. In June 2016 Citgo signed an agreement to restart the plant in Aruba with a capacity of 235 thousand barrels per day. The previous operator of the Valero Energy plant stopped its work in 2012 due to low profits.

PDVSA did not respond to a request for comment. A representative of Citgo said that the company «is not considering and will not consider the possibility of importing oil from Syria for delivery to the refinery on Aruba, the company undertakes to manage the Citgo Refinery Aruba in accordance with the law, including the laws of the United States on sanctions».

In turn, head of Aruba’s refinery Alvin Coleman stated that the company will conduct an investigation regarding violations of sanctions on the company. According to him, the plant was not conducted oil recycling since Citgo signed the contract of his lease.

Tracked on Agency data, there is no evidence that the oil tanker was heading from Syria to Russia and the countries of the Caribbean.