Iranian Oil Tanker Leaves Gibraltar despite US Pressure

The Iranian Grace 1 tanker, renamed "Adrian Darya 1", in the British territory of Gibraltar (Photo: AP)

An Iranian oil supertanker that was seized by the UK was released Sunday and was sailing away from Gibraltar, according to local media and maritime tracking site.

The Iran-flagged Adrian Darya 1, previously named Grace 1, left Gibraltar late on Sunday after having been detained for a month in the British overseas territory for allegedly attempting to breach EU sanctions on Syria.

Gibraltar authorities rejected attempts by the US to seize the oil tanker again, arguing that EU regulations are less strict than US sanctions on Iran.

Iran has warned the United States against attempting to seize the tanker on the high seas after its departure.

Asked about the possibility of the US seizing the vessel by force at sea, Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said: “Such an action, and even the talk of it... would endanger shipping safety in open seas.

“Iran has issued the necessary warnings through official channels, especially the Swiss embassy, to American officials not to commit such an error because it would have heavy consequences,” he told Iranian television.


[Sources: CNN, The Telegraph, CBS News]