Iran Reports Release Of The Seized Vietnamese Tanker
A maritime satellite that had been tracking data on Wednesday showed that a Vietnamese-flagged vessel had been seized by Iranian soldiers in international waters. The Sothys crude oil tanker had been stormed by soldiers from Iran on 24 October in the Gulf of Oman.
Iranian state media declared that the Revolutionary Guard had released the oil tanker following a court order and after the oil, that supposedly belonged to Iran’s Islamic Republic had been emptied.
The tanker appears to have moved from a point near Bandar Abbas port in Iran and was situated in the center of the busy maritime channel. An Iran’s UN mission spokesperson informed AP that Sothys had departed from Iranian waters after transferring oil.
United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI), an advocacy group based in New York, has been tracking vessel movements. Per reports from the organization, in June, the Sothys had received oil from yet another tanker called the Oman Pride.
The US treasury has recognized the Oman Pride, a vessel with the flag of Liberia, as being part of Iran’s oil smuggling operations. The oil is sold off in East Asia. The US sanctions have given a hit to Iran’s oil sector in 2018 from the time of cancellation of the nuclear deal by Trump’s administration.
The region has already experienced a series of occurrences, including a deadly drone charge on a vessel that had links with Israel. Iran, however, has denied its involvement in such cases.