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IRG Navy Seizes Greek Oil Tankers in Gulf over Violations

IRG Navy Seizes Greek Oil Tankers in Gulf over Violations
folder_openIran access_time2 months ago
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By Staff, Agencies

Two Greek oil tankers were seized by the Islamic Revolution Guard [IRG] on Friday in the Gulf waters over violations.

“The IRG Navy today seized two Greek oil tankers for violations they have carried in the azure waters of the Persian Gulf,” the IRG said in a statement on Friday.

It came days after an Iranian oil tanker was captured by Greece in its territorial waters followed by transfer of the oil to the US.

Earlier on Friday, Iran’s Nour News reported that the country was going to take “punitive action” against Greece over the tanker's seizure.

Nour News, which is affiliated with the country’s Supreme National Security Council [SNSC], made the announcement without explaining what kind of action the Islamic Republic intended to take.

Iran’s Ports and Maritime Organization [PMO] issued a statement on Wednesday, describing the US seizure of the Iranian oil cargo from a Russian-operated ship in Greece’s territorial waters as an “act of piracy” that was “in violation of international standards.”

The PMO said the vessel had been held by the Greek government on the coasts of that country, and the cargo on board the ship was seized upon court order and in coordination with the US government.

On Thursday, Reuters quoted unnamed sources as saying that the US Department of Justice had confiscated 700,000 barrels of Iranian oil cargo seized last month off the southern Greek island of Evia onboard a Russian-operated ship.

Meanwhile, the US Navy’s Mideast-based 5th Fleet said it was “looking into” reports that Iran had seized two Greek oil tankers.

Cmdr. Timothy Hawkins of the 5th Fleet told The Associated Press that the Navy was continuing to investigate, without further elaborating.

A report by Lloyd’s List Intelligence said that in two seemingly similar operations, the Suezmax Delta Poseidon and Prudent Warrior, both under Greek flag, were seized by Iranian forces on Friday afternoon.

Athens announced on Friday that Iranian navy helicopters had landed gunmen on the two tankers earlier in the day.

One of them, the Delta Poseidon, was sailing in international waters at the time, the Greek Foreign Ministry said, adding that the second tanker was near the Iranian coast when seized.

The ministry also said nine Greeks were among the crews of both vessels, but did not give a number of other sailors on board.

Athens has informed the European Union and the International Maritime Organization of the incident, it added.

According to Lloyd’s List Intelligence, Delta Poseidon’s destination was Agioi Theodoroi, near Corinth, and the cargo is understood to be for the Motor Oil refinery located there.

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