Friday, December 7, 2012

UANI Calls on Philtex to Stop Evasion, Clarify Its Operations in Tanzania for Iranian Vessels


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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 6, 2012
Contact: Nathan Carleton, press@uani.com 
Phone: (212) 554-3296

  
UANI Calls on Philtex to Stop Evasion, Clarify Its Operations in Tanzania for Iranian Vessels
UANI Asks Tanzania to Investigate Philtex, Take Action to Immediately End Reflagging

New York, NY - On Thursday, United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) called on the Philtex Corporation, and its Director and President, Chris E. Warren, to immediately clarify the nature of its operations in Tanzania for Iranian vessels. UANI also is calling on Tanzania to investigate Philtex's operations in the country, and take action to ensure that Philtex will no longer certifying Iranian vessels with the Tanzanian flag.

Philtex, a corporation based in the UAE but run by Warren out of Texas, provides flagging services for Tanzania. Numerous reports (see here, here, and here) have identified as many as 17 Iranian vessels flying the Tanzanian flag. Both Philtex and Tanzania have claimed to be unaware of why this is occurring.

This week, UANI called on Philtex to stop improperly classifying Iranian vessels and end its relationship with the Iranian regime. Philtex has been engaged in deceptive and improper classification activities, and does not even maintain public lists of the vessels or the entities it provides services for.

Last week, UANI sent a letter to Tanzania's President, Jakaya Kikwete, asking Tanzania to immediately state whether it has stopped reflagging Iranian ships, and either stop doing so or act with diligence to prevent Iranian vessels from continuing to sail the seas with Tanzanian flags.

Said UANI CEO, Ambassador Mark D. Wallace:

Numerous reports have indicated that Iranian ships are being flagged in Tanzania and flying the Tanzanian flag. This is unacceptable and must end immediately. Philtex is an unreputable entity that is known to be servicing Iranian vessels in other parts of the world. As such, Philtex must go further than making vague denials and clarify the nature of its work in Tanzania and stop flagging Iranian vessels.

Tanzania must take responsibility for this matter, and ensure that no Iranian vessels are flying its flag. We call on Tanzania to investigate the activities Philtex is conducting in the country, and either take action to stop the reflagging of Iranian vessels or revoke Philtex's contracts.

The international community has successfully limited Iran's shipping capabilities and greatly isolated the regime from the rest of the world. In order to support that effort and pressure the regime to end its nuclear weapons program, all parties must act responsibility and keep the regime from circumventing sanctions.

UANI has highlighted the shipping industry as an area where the international community can further pressure Iran. In a March 17 Wall Street Journal Op-Ed, six UANI board members wrote that "the world must deny Iran's access to international shipping, a move that would severely affect the regime given its dependence on global trade and seaborne crude oil exports."

All thirteen of the world's major shipping services have now stopped certifying Iranian vessels following UANI's campaign, including Bureau Veritas, Germanischer Lloyd, the Russian Maritime Register of Shipping, Korean Register of Shipping, China Classification Society, and ClassNK. UANI has also announced that Barbados, Hong Kong, Moldova and Mongolia have stopped their reflagging of Iranian vessels.

Click here to read UANI's full November 30 letter to Philtex.
Click here to read UANI's November 27 letter to Tanzania.
Click here to read UANI's November 21 letter to Tanzania.
Click here to learn more about UANI's Shipping Campaign.

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United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) is a program of the American Coalition Against Nuclear Iran, Inc., a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

The prospect of a nuclear-armed Iran should concern every American and be unacceptable to the community of nations. Since 1979 the Iranian regime, most recently under President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's leadership, has demonstrated increasingly threatening behavior and rhetoric toward the US and the West. Iran continues to defy the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the United Nations in their attempts to monitor its nuclear activities. A number of Arab states have warned that Iran's development of nuclear weapons poses a threat to Middle East stability and could provoke a regional nuclear arms race. In short, the prospect of a nuclear armed Iran is a danger to world peace.

United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) is a non-partisan, broad-based coalition that is united in a commitment to prevent Iran from fulfilling its ambition to become a regional super-power possessing nuclear weapons.  UANI is an issue-based coalition in which each coalition member will have its own interests as well as the collective goal of advancing an Iran free of nuclear weapons.


The Objectives of United Against a Nuclear Iran
  1. Inform the public about the nature of the Iranian regime, including its desire and intent to possess nuclear weapons, as well as Iran's role as a state sponsor of global terrorism, and a major violator of human rights at home and abroad;
  2. Heighten awareness nationally and internationally about the danger that a nuclear armed Iran poses to the region and the world;
  3. Mobilize public support, utilize media outreach, and persuade our elected leaders to voice a robust and united American opposition to a nuclear Iran;
  4. Lay the groundwork for effective US policies in coordination with European and other allies;
  5. Persuade the regime in Tehran to desist from its quest for nuclear weapons, while striving not to punish the Iranian people, and;
  6. Promote efforts that focus on vigorous national and international, social, economic, political and diplomatic measures.
UANI is led by an advisory board of outstanding national figures representing all sectors of our country.


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