Gibraltar Police Arrest Captain and Chief Officer from Seized Iranian Super Tanker, Grace 1; Questioned About Possible EU Sanctions Violations

  • Gibraltar police announced that they have arrested the captain and chief officer of the seized Iranian super tanker, Grace 1. The tanker was captured by local Gibraltar police and British marines last week.
  • According to reports, though both men were arrested and questioned on Thursday, neither have been charged so far.
  • A police spokesman also confirmed that documents and electronic devices have been seized from the ship.
  • A police statement read: “The investigation is still ongoing and the Grace 1 continues detained.”
  • Local media reports said “the men, both Indian nationals, are suspected of breaching EU sanctions against Syria,” by allegedly transporting Iranian oil.
  • “The Panama-flagged and Singapore-owned oil super tanker was seized near the Strait of Gibraltar last week, sparking a diplomatic row between London and Tehran,” according to reports.
  • The U.S. said the ship was violating EU sanctions, but Iran denied the accusations and said the ship wasn’t traveling to Syria.
  • Iran compared the seizure of tanker to “piracy” and demanded the release of the ship or threatened retaliation by seizing a British ship.
  • Sources have also said that “the U.K. has raised the ship security codes for British-flagged vessels passing through Iranian waters to the highest – critical – level.”
  • On Thursday, U.K. and U.S. officials reported that five Iranian Revolutionary Guard boats tried to prevent a British oil tanker from passing through the Strait of Hormuz. A Royal Navy ship was forced to encounter the boats and force them to leave.
  • Iran has denied these accusations, as well, and accused the U.K. of creating tensions in the area and said their claims have “no value.”


Reference Links

  • RT: Gibraltar police arrest Iranian tanker’s captain, chief officer READ
  • Arab News: Gibraltar police arrest captain, officer of detained Iran tanker Grace 1 READ
  • Evening Standard: Police in Gibraltar arrest captain and chief officer of Iranian supertanker Grace 1 for breaching EU sanctions READ
  • Reuters: Gibraltar police arrest captain of detained Iranian tanker READ

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