The US is poised and ready to ensure uninterrupted oil supplies through the Strait of Hormuz despite threats from Iran, Secretary of State Michael Pompeo told Sky News Arabia on Tuesday.
Pompeo stressed that Tehran "should know that America is committed to keeping sea lines open, keeping the transit of oil available for the entire world."
"That's the commitment we have had for decades. We continue under that commitment," he added.
The statement came after Reuters cited an Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) commander as saying that the Islamic Republic would block the Strait of Hormuz so as to stop oil traffic from the Persian Gulf if Washington reinstates sanctions against Tehran.
"If they want to stop Iranian oil exports, we will not allow any oil shipment to pass through the Strait of Hormuz,” Ismail Kowsari, the deputy commander of the Sarallah military base, pointed out.
His remarks were preceded by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani's pledge to stand firm against US threats to ban the Islamic Republic’s oil sales.
On May 8, President Donald Trump announced the US's withdrawal from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, vowing to re-impose anti-Iranian sanctions.
Washington also made it clear that the companies doing business with Iran should wrap up any deals with the Islamic Republic or they would be subject to sanctions as well.