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Interesting US History
A Website Devoted to Interesting Events in U.S. History





November 12, 1979

President Jimmy Carter Orders Halt to Iran Oil Imports

On this day in 1979, President Jimmy Carter ordered a halt to all oil imports from Iran due to to the hostage crisis.

The hostage crisis began on November 4, when an estimated 3,000 extremists stormed the U.S. Embassy in Tehran taking 66 U.S. diplomats hostage. Although some of the hostages were released throughout the next several months, 52 were held for 444 days.

When Carter ordered he halt to oil imports from Iran, Saudi Arabia and other OPEC nations increased production to help offset the decline but the overall loss in production drove the price of oil higher which pushed the already high inflation levels near 15%.

The hostages were not released until January 20, 1981, just minutes after Ronald Reagan was sworn in as the new president of the United States.