Iran Foreign Minister Takes To YouTube Against "Unlawful" US Sanctions

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif

"The president's [Donald Trump's] South Asia strategy underscores our ongoing support of Afghanistan's economic growth and development as well as our close partnership with India", said the official.

This waiver will bring some measure of relief to India, which had been discussing a sanctions exemption for Chabahar having signed an agreement with Iran and Afghanistan in May 2016 for the port's development.

The move by the Donald Trump administration is considered as an endorsement by Washington of India's major role in the development of the port on the Gulf of Oman, which is of enormous strategic importance for the reconstruction of war-torn Afghanistan.

Crude's poised for the longest losing streak since 2014 as concerns of a supply crunch eased on a forecast for rising USA production and waivers for eight countries allowing temporary import of Iranian oil.

"After extensive consideration, the United States has provided an exception under the Iran Freedom and Counter-Proliferation Act to allow #Afghanistan to continue to import petroleum products from Iran and for shipment of non-sanctionable goods through #Chabahar Port for Afg", tweeted Bass.

Zahedan is also in Iran but closer to the Afghanistan border.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration report on crude oil inventories is due to be released on Wednesday at 10:30a.m. EST.

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Iran late past year inaugurated the port on the Indian Ocean, which is being built largely by India and is expected to provide a key supply route for Afghanistan while allowing India to bypass rival Pakistan to trade with Central Asia and Africa.

"Trump administration made the right move by exempting India for the development of the Chabahar port", Jeff Smith of the Heritage Foundation told PTI.

New Delhi has poured $2 billion into development in Afghanistan since the 2001 USA -led overthrow of the Taliban government.

The comments come after Washington slapped what it describes as "the toughest sanctions ever" on Iran after US President Donald Trump's controversial decision in May to abandon the multi-nation nuclear deal with Tehran.

Rick Rossow of the Center for Strategic and International Studies said: "Chabahar's role to transport key logistics to Afghanistan will continue to grow over time. Where Chabahar is critical to India's access to and assistance towards ensuring a stable Afghanistan, India's energy needs require a basket of energy suppliers", Pande said.

In the US, industry data were said to show that nationwide crude inventories rose last week, expanding by 7.83 million barrels.

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