Iranian oil tanker released from Gibraltar
An Iranian oil supertanker has been released by British authorities and is moving away from Gibraltar, according to local media and shipping data.
British Royal Marines seized the Adrian Darya on 4 July over suspicions it was carrying oil to Syria via the Mediterranean Sea, in violation of European Union sanctions. Iran denied the ship was headed for Syria.
Two weeks after the tanker was seized, Iran captured the Stena Impero, a British-flagged tanker in the Strait of Hormuz, in what is widely regarded as an act of retaliation.
The Adrian Darya, formerly known as the Grace 1, has set sail for an unknown destination.
Last week the Supreme Court in the British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar, which is situated at the mouth of the Mediterranean Sea, approved the release of Iranian tanker after officials said they no longer needed to detain it.
Hamid Baeidinejad, Iran’s ambassador to the United Kingdom, said on Twitter: “A round-the-clock effort has been under way for port procedures and the deployment of a full crew on board since Thursday’s injunction was lifted.
“Contacts with the co-ordinator are moment-by-moment. The ship is expected to depart tonight as two specialist engineering teams arrive from Gibraltar on different routes.”
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