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Iran threatens the UK to seize one of its oil tankers.

| 2019

Earlier this week, Gibraltar government (a British overseas territory) said it believed that the Grace 1, belonging to Iran, was carrying crude oil to the Baniyas refinery in Syria. Though, this refinery is the property of an entity subject to the European Union (EU) sanctions against Syria. In response to that, Iranian leaders threatened the UK of "retaliatory measures"

Iran threatens the UK to seize one of its oil tankers An image of the supertanker Grace 1, believed to be carrying 2M barrels of crude oil to Syria (Picture Source: UK MoD)

“That refinery is the property of an entity that is subject to European Union sanctions against Syria,” Gibraltar Chief Minister Fabian Picardo said. “With my consent, our port and law enforcement agencies sought the assistance of the Royal Marines in carrying out this operation,” he added.

Mohsen Rezai, a senior commander in Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said on Twitter: “If the UK doesn’t return the Iranian tanker, the duty of responsible bodies is to seize a British oil tanker in a retaliatory measure.”

Afterwards, Iran's Foreign Minister summoned the British ambassador to voice its objection to the illegal and unacceptable seizure of its ship.

This comes as tensions constantly grow in the region after Iran was suspected of attacking tankers near the Strait of Hormuz. Recently, the U.S. government announced that it was going to deploy 1.000 more troops to the region, in addition to the 1.500 it had deployed in late May.

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