Gibraltar: Oil on tanker has been sold – Iran

Iranian government spokesman said on Monday that it has sold oil from a tanker released by Gibraltar after weeks in the custody of British Royal Marines and the vessel’s owner will decide on its next destination.

The Iranian government spokesman did not identify the recipient of the oil carried by the Adrian Darya tanker. After Gibraltar freed the vessel on Aug. 18, the United States said it would take every action it could to prevent it delivering oil to Syria in contravention of U.S. sanctions.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran has sold the oil of this ship and now the owner and purchaser of this oil will decide the destination of the cargo,” government spokesman Ali Rabiei said.

Refinitiv Eikon shipping data showed on Monday that the tanker was no longer recorded as bound for Turkey, its indicated destination at the weekend. However, no new destination was given.

The tanker’s location is currently south of mainland Greece, west of the island of Crete, the data showed.

Soon after the detention order was lifted, a U.S. federal court ordered the seizure of the vessel on different grounds, but that petition was rejected by Gibraltar

The vessel, laden with 2 million barrels of oil, is currently heading had previously been heading to the port of Kalamata in southern Greece after its release by Gibraltar. But Greece said it would not offer any facilities to the vessel.

The ship, whose name was changed from Grace 1 during its detention off Gibraltar, was released after a five-week standoff over whether it was carrying Iranian oil to Syria in violation of European Union sanctions.

Iran has warned that future seizure of the Iranian vessel by the U.S will attract “heavy consequences”. The U.S stated it wanted the Iranian tanker detained on the basis of its link to Iran’s revolutionary Guards which has been flagged as a terrorist organization by the U.S government.

Tensions have been building in the Gulf region as the U.S government has required to bar all Iranian oil sale since withdrawing from world power 2015 deal with Iran.

Iran’s shooting-down of a U.S. surveillance drone and its seizure of a tanker flying the flag of U.S. ally Britain last month has built up tensions between the two countries.

The ship which it described as Iran’s most advanced destroyer, would be accompanied by a logistical vessel and a helicopter carrier, adding that the newly developed long range missile will be assigned to gulf of Aden to provide security for Iranian ship traveling through that zone.

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Ihesiulo Grace

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