Saturday, 17 August, 2019

Gibraltar meets Iran to defuse Royal Navy tanker row

Iran & Gibraltar hold ‘positive’ meeting on detained supertanker Gibraltar delegation meets with Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson
Patty Aguilar | 20 July, 2019, 01:41

British Prime Minister Theresa Might thanked Gibraltar's Chief Minister for upholding European Union sanctions in opposition to Syria by detaining an oil tanker, her workplace stated on Wednesday, including its unbiased authorized course of must be revered.

On Thursday, Gibraltar's Chief Minister Fabian Picardo held a "constructive and positive" meeting with Iranian officials in London to discuss the tanker.

On Wednesday, the chief minister met with senior Iranian officials in London and held talks aimed at defusing tensions between the United Kingdom and Iran both in the Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf.

On Friday, the owners of the tanker Stena Impero released a statement that said it had been "approached by unidentified small crafts and a helicopter during transit of the Strait of Hormuz while the vessel was in worldwide waters". London has since announced the deployment of two more warships to the Gulf region for the coming months.

Britain said it was urgently seeking further information after a British-flagged tanker took a sudden turn into Iranian waters.

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During the talks, Hunt also termed the conversation as "constructive" and promised to "facilitate" the release of the tanker "if we received guarantees that it would not be going to Syria".

According to the agency, the order authorising the detention of the tanker can be extended for up to 90 days.

He called on the British government to do "whatever is necessary" to ensure the safe and swift return of the ship's crew.

The US military, which maintains a naval base in the Gulf and regularly patrols the area, said it will work "aggressively" with allies to ensure safe civilian shipping in the region. The tanker was captured by British troops and accused of trying to sell oil to Syria.

"The IRGC seized the tanker at the request of the maritime authorities in the Iranian province of Hormozgan for "not following global maritime regulations", state television cited an IRGC statement as saying". It did not specify a date for the meeting.

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