The US and EU crackdown on Iran is continuing as they try and block it from circumventing sanctions by re-registering its ships in obscure locations. Forcing compliance is one of the measures being used to make Tehran abandon its nuclear enrichment program. The Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) recently changed the registry of around 12 vessels from Tuvalu and Zanzibar to Moldova (MEES, 28 September). But the government of the landlocked East European state has now succumbed to US pressure and removed them from its official registry.

On 28 September, three of those ships reappeared in the official registry of Mongolia, another landlocked state, sandwiched between Russia and China. But a day later J Jambajamts, the deputy director-general of the Mongolia Maritime Administration, announced that registration of all Iranian-owned ships would be canceled. He said the Singapore-based Mongolian registry had recorded five Iranian ships during August and September. (CONTINUED - 313 WORDS)