IRANIAN officials have been kicked out of the Netherlands – with Dutch authorities refusing to provide any information on why as tensions between Tehran and the United States soar in a row over oil.
A spokesman for Dutch intelligence confirmed two Iranian civilians were expelled from Holland in a statement.
But when pressed for more details, refused.
He said: “We can confirm that the Netherlands has expelled two persons accredited to the Iranian embassy.
“We will not provide any further information.”
The news follows a threat by Iran to cut off oil reserves to the rest of the world in the wake of conflict with the US.
Donald Trump recently warned of punishments for companies that purchase oil from Iran, which triggered a retaliation from President Hassan Rouhani who threatened to halt exports of oil to neighbouring countries.
Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, an elite branch of the military, said yesterday he is prepared to follow presidential orders to halt Iranian oil exports.
Major-General Qassem Soleimani said in a letter published on Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA): “I kiss Rouhani’s hand for expressing such wise and timely comments, and I am at your service to implement any policy that serves the Islamic Republic.”
And Esmail Kowsari, deputy commander of the Sarollah Revolutionary Guards base in Tehran, said: “Any hostile attempt by the US will be followed by an exorbitant cost for them.
“If Iran’s oil exports are to be prevented, we will not give permission for oil to be exported to the world through the Strait of Hormuz.”
The Strait of Hormuz is at the mouth of the Persian Gulf, and carries the world’s largest concentration of tankers with around 30 percent of all sea-borne traded crude oil and other liquids throughout the year.
It is a major oil shipping route for Persian Gulf nations to the Arabian Sea.
Stephen Brenneck, an oil analyst at PVM Oil Associates, has cautioned that halting Iranian oil exports “would propel oil prices well into triple figures”.
In a research note published on Thursday, Mr Brenneck said: “Around 17 million barrels per day or 35 percent of all seaborne oil exports pass through the strategic waterway.
“Iran’s leadership is clearly adamant that the new situation created by the U.S. withdrawal from the nuclear pact will not go without consequences.
“This, in turn, should go a long way to ensuring that the geopolitical premium remains alive and well.”